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Suruga Cup: Universidad de Chile lock horns with Kashima Antlers in the intercontinental Cup

July 31, 2012 By Gregory Sica
The reigning Copa Sudamericana champions will be aiming to conquer Japan upon their arrival to the Kashima Soccer Stadium.
Universidad de Chile will be hoping to win the second international title of their history when they clash with Kashima Antlers in the final of the Suruga Cup at Kashima Soccer Stadium on Wednesday.

As the winners of the 2011 Copa Sudamericana, the Chilean giants will represent South America against the 2011 J. League champions.

Universidad, who beat Liga de Quito of Ecuador 4-0 on aggregate over the two legs of the Copa Sudamericana final, are looking to become the third South American team to win the title.

Jorge Sampaoli, the coach of the Chileans, believes that Wednesday's rivals are a very good side, but he still rates his team's chances of coming out on top.

"Our rivals are very difficult and we have to be prepared. We are in good shape and we will try out best to win the Cup," Sampaoli said, upon his arrival to Japan.

"This match is very important for us. To travel overseas and play a game of this nature is very important. We are representing South America."

"U" captain Jose Rojas agreed with Sampaoli in that it is a very important match for his team.

"To get here you have to win the Copa Sudamericana. It is always important to win an international title and we are very optimistic ahead of the match. We have waited for this moment for a very long time and we have worked very hard," he said.

Since the annual international soccer match was inaugurated in 2008, two South American teams and two Japanese teams have triumphed.

Arsenal de Sarandi of Argentina were the first team to win the trophy in 2008, and they were followed by Internacional of Brazil in 2009.

Since then Japanese teams have hit back, with FC Tokyo and Jubilo Iwata beating Liga de Quito and Independiente, respectively, after penalty shoot-outs.


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