Those assuming that Santos and Universidad de Chile would provide an entertaining Copa Libertadores final, while actual finalists Boca Juniors and Corinthians would provide a dull and negative final, were proven wrong on Wednesday by a fantastic match at La Bombonera. Boca took a lead in the second half, but were undone by second-half substitute Romarinho in a 1-1 draw.
Boca were well on top in the first half, playing most of the period on their end of the pitch. Corinthians defended well, however, and the home side struggled to create shots. Rolando Schiavi had a header sail over the bar in the 2nd minute and Santiago Silva had a great overhead kick blocked in the 35th minute, but Boca struggled to test Cassio.
They eventually found their breakthrough in the 72nd minute, through a man who probably should have been sent off. Fernando Roncaglia, who narrowly avoided a second yellow card on multiple occasions between his booking in the 18th minute and his goal in the 72nd, scored off of a rebound after a corner kick. Corinthians defender Chicao appeared to handle the ball off the line after a corner and could have been sent off, but the referee let play continue, allowing Roncaglia to finish from close range to give Boca the lead.
Romarinho, a relative unknown outside of the Corinthians fanbase until last week, came into the game in the 82nd minute. He scored twice on the weekend and kept up that momentum with another stunning goal, scored in the 84th minute. With his first touch of the ball in Copa Libertadores, he hit a great finish in the 84th minute, giving his team a vital goal headed home.
The away goals rule is not in effect in the final of the Copa Libertadores, but Corinthians will be happy with their away draw and the knowledge that any win at home will see them lift the trophy for the first time in their history.
You can find our previous coverage in our Boca Juniors vs. Corinthians, 2012 Copa Libertadores Final StoryStream. For more from around the world of football, follow @SBNationSoccer on twitter.