Friday Kickoff: Boca Juniors make Copa Libertadores final, Postiga out and more

BocaJ (Getty Images)

One of South America's most storied clubs is on the cusp of adding another Copa Libertadores championship to its tally.

Argentine power Boca Juniors are a step away from their seventh Libertadores title after eliminating Universidad de Chile with a 0-0 draw in the second leg of their semifinal tie Thursday night to reach the final. Boca Juniors had won the home leg 2-0 and did enough on the road to end the high-powered Chileans' run and extend their unbeaten streak in Libertadores play to 10 matches.

Boca Juniors will face Corinthians, which eliminated defending champion and Neymar-led Santos on Wednesday to reach their first final ever, over the two-legged title bout on June 27 and July 4. Boca, which won their last title in 2007, can match Independiente's record of seven championships with a victory over their Brazilian opponents.

Here are a few more stories to get your Friday going:

POSTIGA OUT FOR PORTUGAL

If Portugal is to get by Spain or France in the Euro 2012 semifinals, it appears it will have to do so without starting striker Helder Postiga.

The 29-year-old Postiga was stretchered off in the first half of Portugal's 1-0 quarterfinal victory over the Czech Republic with an apparent hamstring injury, and reports say he has been ruled out of the semifinal. Hugo Almeida, who replaced Postiga, is a candidate to step into the starting lineup, as are forwards Nelson Oliveira and Silvestre Varela. Postiga has started all of Portugal's games in Euro 2012 thus far.

GEBRE SELASSIE SIGNS WITH WERDER BREMEN

One Euro 2012's breakout players has already had his tournament performance lead to bigger things on the club level.

Czech Republic right back Theodor Gebre Selassie has signed with German club Werder Bremen on a four-year deal, moving from Czech power Liberec. Gebre Selassie, 25, had a standout group stage for the Czechs, helping them recover from an opening game disappointment to qualify for the quarterfinals before ultimately succumbing to a Cristiano Ronaldo goal in Thursday's loss.

BAROS RETIRES FROM INTERNATIONAL PLAY

Czech striker Milan Baros has joined the likes of Andriy Shevchenko as veteran forwards to retire from international duty following elimination at Euro 2012, announcing his retirement on Thursday. Baros, 30, steps away with 41 career international goals, good for second most in Czech Republic history. 

The golden boot winner at Euro 2004, Baros struggled to make an impact in 2012, failing to score and only netting one goal during qualifying.

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Which team do you see winning the Copa Libertadores? Do you see Portugal getting by either Spain or France? What do you think of Gebre Selassie's move? Were you impressed with his play? Surprised to see Baros step away from the international game?

Share your thoughts below.

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5 Responses to Friday Kickoff: Boca Juniors make Copa Libertadores final, Postiga out and more

  1. BSU SC says:

    Congrats to Boca Juniors! I can’t wait for the Copa Libertadores final. Corinthians and Boca Juniors definitely deserve to be there. I’d have to consider Boca the favorites, they look unbeatable. And if U de Chile could not score on them with all of the offensive power their team had, then it’s hard to imagine Corinthians having any better luck. But it should be a pretty spectacular final. Brazil vs. Argentina once again!

  2. David says:

    Portugal is extremely dangerous. They got progressively better as a side throughout the game. They had a plan to break down a team who sat back and defended. They play best on the counter. They played even better with the lead.

    These attributes are lacking in so many teams. Look at England trying to play with the lead against Ukraine. Look at Spain’s near inability to break down Croatia.

    For anyone who doubts Ronaldo, re-watch the game against the Czech and watch Ronaldo during the 57-60′ he is both a monster and absolutely committed to the team.

  3. JScott says:

    For me, perhaps the most shocking part of this tournament was learning that not only is he still playing soccer but that Milan Baros is just 30 years old.

  4. RLW2020 says:

    any way to watch this game on US TV?

  5. BSU SC says:

    Only available on spanish language stations. I go to one of the local latin american bars to catch the games. I think it’s Fox Deportes that the games are broadcast on.