There are seemingly countless football tournaments in Brazil, but one of the biggest and most important ones is the Libertadores Cup, known as Copa Santander Libertadores da América, or Copa Libertadores for short.
Named after the South American liberators who fought for independence, the tournament is made up of 38 city teams in Latin America that compete over six to eight months each year for the title of best in the region. The first Libertadores was held in 1960 and was won by a Uruguayan team. Brazilian clubs have won 15 Libertadores since then, including last year, when São Paulo’s Santos team claimed victory.
In order to get into Libertadores, each team must qualify within its country of origin. In Brazil, the four top teams in the Campeonato Brasileiro and the winning team of the Copa do Brasil qualify for Libertadores.
The 2012 quarter-finals are happening now, and Brazilian teams Fluminense (from Rio), Santos (from São Paulo), Vasco (from Rio), and Corinthians (from São Paulo) made it to this round. Fluminense was eliminated tonight before making it to the next round, and Vasco and Corinthians also play tonight.
Will a Brazilian team win Libertadores this year? Find out over the next few weeks!