Copa São Paulo: Santos crowned champions with victory over Goiás
After a gruelling three weeks, the Peixe finally secured a second Copa São Paulo title—having not won the event since 1984, despite their fearsome reputation in youth development.
After an end-to-end opening period in which forwards Givanildo and Paulo both went close for their respective sides, Santos took the lead on the half-hour mark.
Left-back Emerson, a veteran of the 2011 Brazil Under-21 side made his way forward and was twice felled in the opposition area, with the referee eventually pointed to the spot. Up stepped Pedro Castro and not even penalty expert Paulo Henrique could save his side.
Within minutes, the Paulista side doubled their lead as forward Neilton seized upon a defensive error to run clear of the defence and clip the ball over the advancing keeper to score his fourth goal of the tournament.
Going into half-time, Goiás looked dead in the water. However, they were not ready to roll over for their opponents and, within minutes of the restart pulled a goal back through Arthur.
Moments later, they had the opportunity to level as Santos centre-back Walace felled Erik in the area. Liniker stepped up to take the kick, but pulled his effort wide of the post with Gabriel diving the right way.
Santos would soon make Goiás pay for their error, though, as forward Giva played a smart one-two with partner Neilton to burst into the area and slot home his fourth of the competition.
it was to be the killer blow for Goiás' hopes as, under the watchful eyes of Neymar, Santos strolled through the final minutes to a well-deserved title.
SANTOS: Gabriel Gasparotto; Alison, Walace, Jubal, Emerson; Lucas Otávio, Leandrinho, Pedro Castro, Léo Cittadini (Paulo Ricardo); Neilton (Lucas Crispin), Giva (Diego Cardozo).
Coach: Claudinei Oliveira
GOIÁS: Paulo Henrique, Péricles, Felipe, Allef (Arthur), Mário Sérgio, Arthur, Rodrigo, Liniker, Jarlan (Murilo); Paulo (Caio), Erik.
Coach: Augusto César