Flamengo x São Paulo: Dorival seeks two wins in the Brazilian Cup – 09/16/2023 – Sports

Flamengo x São Paulo: Dorival seeks two wins in the Brazilian Cup – 09/16/2023 – Sports

Dorival Júnior and Flamengo are again in the final of the Copa do Brasil. One year after the victory they obtained over Corinthians, the São Paulo coach and the Rio club find themselves on opposite sides, facing each other for two.

The 61-year-old coach is now in charge of São Paulo, visitors in the first game of the decision, this Sunday (17), at Maracanã, in Rio de Janeiro. The title will be defined a week later, at Morumbi, in São Paulo. Both duels, scheduled for 4pm, will be broadcast on TV Globo and SporTV.

The paths taken for the reunion were not what either party expected. Dorival didn’t even imagine a reunion, as she didn’t plan a disagreement. Flamengo’s directors had a different idea, however, and, at the end of 2022, they warned that it was time for a divorce.

The union had yielded, in addition to the triumph in the Copa do Brasil, the Copa Libertadores title. But the two cups were lifted with difficulties in decisions, with what red and black hats saw as Júnior’s mistakes. In the Copa do Brasil, defined only by penalties, a technically inferior Corinthians had moments of vast superiority. In the Libertadores, Athletico Paranaense caused a lot of discomfort until a foolish expulsion.

With a great challenge in the short term, the ambitious goal of winning the Club World Cup, the option was to change. If powerful Real Madrid couldn’t wait, because their time would come, why not bet on the coach who, with fewer quality pieces, had made Flamengo sweat?

With Dorival discarded, the Gávea club embraced Vítor Pereira, Corinthians’ commander in last year’s Copa do Brasil. The Portuguese’s vows of love to his mother-in-law were not an obstacle, which, according to him, forced him to leave Corinthians and return to his homeland to help her. The coach left São Paulo for Rio de Janeiro, ready for the possibility of “fighting for so many titles”, as he stated.

Lost everyone.

Even though he had the technical knowledge attributed to him, Vítor did not know how to form human relationships like Júnior. And, in just over three months in which he led the red and black team, he failed in the finals of the Taça Guanabara, the Campeonato Carioca, the Supercopa do Brasil and the Recopa Sul-Americana. At the World Cup, they lost their place in the final to Saudi Al Hilal, Real Madrid’s opponent in the final game.

After some waiting and a long-distance relationship with another Portuguese, the former Jorge Jesus, Flamengo bet on Argentine Jorge Sampaoli. There were good games, others very bad, plus a painful elimination – in the Libertadores – and multiple blows, with clashes between players and members of the coaching staff.

More or less while all this was happening, the serene Dorival was waiting for an opportunity to go back to work. She appeared in São Paulo, in April, after yet another dismissal by Rogério Ceni. The tricolor’s evolution was clear under the command of Júnior, who found a way to return to the final of the Copa do Brasil, with the chance to lead the Morumbi team to a title it never achieved.

“I have always followed my course calmly. I don’t have any different feelings, other than gratitude and pride for having played for a team like Flamengo for the third time. The affection I still receive from Flamengo fans is an impressive thing. Today, I defend São Paulo, with all possible strength. I will give myself for the title”, he stated.

Now, the São Paulo native will be reunited with his old teammates, longing for some tranquility. Flamengo’s last months have had at least two punches in the face: the now fired physical trainer Pablo Fernández hit striker Pedro, and midfielder Gerson broke full-back Varela’s nose.

“The game is going to be great. We’re going to face a giant club,” said red-and-black left-back Filipe Luís. “And we’re going to face a great coach.”

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