Anfield pays truly remarkable tribute to tragic Chapecoense squad 5 years ago

Anfield pays truly remarkable tribute to tragic Chapecoense squad

Football rivalries were put to one side last night.

Liverpool and Leeds have enjoyed many epic, feisty battles over the years and fans of both sides were looking forward to the latest chapter.

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Anfield played host to Liverpool's EFL Cup clash with the Championship side last night and the atmosphere was rocking before the tie even kicked off.

In between the singing and the first whistle, though, fans of the two sides joined the players in a moment's silence to remember the crew members, journalists, coaches and Chapecoense players that tragically died in a plane crash, in Colombia, on Tuesday morning.

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As Leeds and Liverpool's players linked arms, on opposite sides of the centre circle, the chanting ceased and a truly respectful, reverential silence took hold.

It was a fitting tribute to a fellow football team and one that will long have to cope with a shocking tragedy.

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Fair play to all involved.

Earlier in the day, Atlético Nacional, the Colombian team due to face Chapecoense in this year's Copa Sudamericana final, offered to forfeit the trophy to their opponents.

The Medellín-based club have also set up an information hotline for friends and relatives of those killed and injured in the crash, as well as encouraging fans to bring candles to their ground tomorrow in a symbol of solidarity.

And now, in a written statement, the two-time Sudamericana finalists have urged South American football's governing body Conmebol to award the trophy to the Santa Catarina-based side.

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"Atlético Nacional invites Conmebol to the title of the Copa Sudamericana be delivered to the Associação Chapecoense de Futebol as... a posthumous tribute to the victims of the fatal accident," the statement reads.

"For our part, and forever, Chapecoense are champions of the Copa Sudamericana 2016."

In addition to the Colombian side, a number of clubs from Brazil and elsewhere in South America have come forward to offer their players to Chapecoense following the tragedy, in which 76 of the 81 people on board the plane are believed to have lost their lives.

Directors of Brazilian clubs Coritiba, Corinthians, Palmeiras, Portuguesa, Santos and Sao Paulo have all offered to loan players to the Série A club, who were due to compete in their debut Sudamericana final, as have Paraguayan outfit Libertad.

And, according to the Daily Mirror, clubs in Brazil's top flight have also called on authorities to give Chapecoense - ninth in the league with one domestic game remaining - an exemption from relegation in 2017.

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