Flamengo thrashes Gremio to reach Copa Libertadores final

Bruno Henrique of Brazil's Flamengo, left, embraces teammate Gabriel after scoring a goal against Gremio. AP Images

Brazilian club Flamengo outclassed compatriots Gremio 5-0 on Wednesday and will play the Copa Libertadores final against defending champions River Plate of Argentina after winning the two-legged affair 6-1 on aggregate.

The Rio de Janeiro side opened the scoring at the Maracana Stadium through Bruno Henrique in the 42nd minute.

But the best entertainment for more than 70,000 home fans came in the second half.

Gabriel Barbosa scored in the 46th and 56th minutes. Pablo Mari added the fourth in the 67th minute and Rodrigo Caio finished the scoring in the 70th.

"We have written our names in the page of Flamengo's history," said Gabriel Barbosa, the man of the match whose second half double takes him to the top of this season's Libertadores goalscoring chart.

"Obviously there is another game to go but we are happy to be in the final."

The first leg ended 1-1 in Porto Alegre earlier in October.

Flamengo, who also sit top of the Brazilian first division, last won this title in 1981, when Brazilian World Cup stars Zico, Junior and Leandro were playing for the side.

The Brazilians will face River Plate, who beat Buenos Aires rivals Boca Juniors in the other semifinal, at Santiago's Estadio Nacional on Nov. 23 in the first single-match final of the South American tournament.

Information from the Associated Press and Reuters was used in this story.