Seedorf's Botafogo wins Guanabara Cup in Rio
SAO PAULO (AP) — Clarence Seedorf won his first title since moving to Brazil on Sunday by helping Botafogo defeat Vasco da Gama 1-0 to clinch the Guanabara Cup, the first stage of the Rio de Janeiro state championship.
The Dutch midfielder started the play that led to Lucas' goal in the 80th minute at Engenhao Stadium, giving Botafogo its seventh Guanabara Cup title and ensuring the team made the final of the Rio championship. Botafogo can automatically win the state title if it also wins the Rio Cup, the competition's second stage.
Vasco, without a Rio trophy since 2004, could have won the title with a draw because it had the best campaign entering the final. It had a goal disallowed in the 83rd because of offside.
The 36-year-old Seedorf joined Botafogo from AC Milan last year.
He began the scoring play with a back-flick to a teammate on the left side of the field. After the ball was crossed into the area, Lucas came from outside of the box to fire a low right-footed shot through Vasco defenders.
"It was one of the most important goals of my career," Lucas said.
Seedorf came to Botafogo as one of the biggest transfers by a foreign player to Brazil. He won the Champions League with Ajax in 1995, with Real Madrid in 1998 and with AC Milan in 2003 and 2007. The midfielder played at the 1998 World Cup with the Netherlands, plus the 1996, 2000 and 2004 European Championships.