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Brazilian Wonderkid Lifts Internactional to CWC Final

  • Reuters UK, Wednesday, December 13, 2006 3:39 PM
Pato Alexandre, the highly-touted Brazilian teenager, scored the first goal for Internacional yesterday during its 2-1 victory over Al Ahly of Egypt in the Club World Cup semifinals Wednesday in Yokohama. Seventeen-year old Pato, which means "duck" in both Portuguese and Spanish, headed the ball in the back of the net after just eight minutes, only for his effort to be ruled back for offsides. Fifteen minutes later, he had the ball in the back of the net again-for real this time-as the ball broke kindly for him to fire home from the edge of the area. For Pato, it was just his second start since making an astonishing debut for Inter against Palmeiras last month, where he scored two and setup one in 30 minutes. Inter coach Abel Braga expressed his delight with a tense win in a game he called "the biggest in the club's 99-year history." The South American champion now faces either Barcelona, Europe's Spanish representative, or Club America, CONCACAF's Mexican representative in the final. Worryingly for Internacional, Pato came off clutching his ankle in the 64th minute. However, his replacement, Luiz Adriano, 19, went on to score the game's winner with his first touch in what was his professional debut. FIFA's Club World Cup involves the world's six continental champions. Last year, Brazil's Sao Paulo edged out Liverpool, 1-0, in the tournament final.

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