I can’t even begin to describe how lucky we were to be at this Grand Final. I’m not a huge soccer fan but this was definitely one of the most exciting games of sport I have ever seen.
Club Atlético Nacional S.A., also known as Atlético Nacional, the home team based in Medellin are the current league and cup champions. Considered to be one of the strongest clubs from Colombia, they are one of the most consistent clubs in the country.
The opposing team Club Deportivo Popular Junior F.C. S.A., also known simply as Junior or by its former name Atlético Junior, is a team based in Barranquilla. Atletico Nacional went into the grand final needing a result following their 1-0 loss to Junior in the opening leg on Sunday.
After arriving in Medellin on Tuesday, I was stoked to learn that the Grand Final was being played on the Wednesday night. We quickly went and bought tickets and arrived at the stadium early to get through the intense security and get some decent seats. The scenes before the game were crazy but it didn’t even come close to what we witness after the game.
Lightning start, 3 minutes into the game and Atlético Nacional scores! But before half time Junior’s lead forward equalised. Most of the second half was uneventful and it was looking like Atlético Nacional would lose the final on aggregate.
Atlético Nacional were peppering the goals in the last ten minutes and then the unbelievable happened in the 93rd minute – a Atlético Nacional corner converted into a goal!!!
The stadium erupted. People were jumping everywhere, crying and screaming, jumping around out of control and hugging complete strangers. It was so electric! So much emotion from every person present and after witnessing a football final miracle in the last seconds, the people went crazy!
The penalty shootout was just as electric and Atlético Nacional end up victorious 4-2 and are crowned champions.
Medellin went into riot mode immediately after the game with the streets flooded with hysterical and joyous locals.
Check out a short YouTube clip of the pandemonium both during and after the game. I have never seen anything like this before.