Substitute Luís Semedo scored with 21 minutes left to give Benfica victory in front of more than 40,000 fans in Montevideo.
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Benfica won the the first Under-20 Intercontinental Cup as substitute Luís Semedo got the only goal against Peñarol in Montevideo.
In the first meeting between the winners of the Copa Libertadores U20 and UEFA Youth League, it was the European side that triumphed but it took some fine saves from Samuel Soares in the Benfica goal to keep out the South American champions.
47' Rossi tests Soares
69' Benfica sub Luís Semedo strikes
78' Soares saves from Homenchenko
Match in brief
In front of a fervent crowd of 40,579 at the Estadio Centenario, stage for the first FIFA World Cup final in 1930, the Eagles began promisingly. But a well-organised Peñarol side allowed Benfica little space to produce the sweeping attacking football with which they defeated Salzburg 6-0 in April's UEFA Youth League final, though hat-trick scorer that day Henrique Araújo was not available today due to senior UEFA Champions League duties.
The home side also looked dangerous on the break, Máximo Alonso having a shot blocked. Samuel Soares also had to be alert to tip away an inswinging Santiago Homenchenko free-kick and early in the second half he got down well to a Nicolás Rossi strike.
Yet it was Benfica who struck with just over 20 minutes left, Luís Semedo pouncing to turn in a flicked-on Cher N'Dour corner, scoring as a substitute just as he did in the UEFA Youth League final. Peñarol looked to respond and Samuel Soares did superbly to deny Homenchenko again as Benfica held on to lift the new trophy.
Luís Semedo, winning scorer: "It's always great to score a goal to help the team. I'm very happy to get the winning goal. The victory is deserved in a very well-played game and with an crowd that was like their 12th player."
Peñarol: R Rodriguez; J Ferreira, Gonzalez, A Rodriguez, De Ritis; Garcia, Guisolfo (M Ferreira 73); Rossi, Homenchenko (Carrizo 89), Alonso (Mansilla 79); Cruz (Diaz 73)
Benfica: Samuel Soares; João Tomé (Francisco Domingues 86), Bajrami, Lacroix, Rafael Rodrigues; N'Dour (Neto 74), Jevsenak (Nuno Félix 86), João Neves; Pereira (Sousa 74), João Resende (Luís Semedo 64), Diego Moreira
2022/23 Youth League
The new UEFA Youth League season kicks off on 6 September, with 64 teams competing for the title won for the first time in 2021/22 by Benfica.