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Chapecoense win Campeonato Catarinense title, first since crash

Mario Kempes went to Rio to meet the father of Everton Kempes, who died in the charter plane carrying the Chapecoense team.

Brazilian club Chapecoense have lifted their first overall league championship since the air crash that killed 19 of their players in November.

Chapecoense successfully defended their Campeonato Catarinense title on Sunday, despite a 1-0 defeat at home against Avai.

Avai had won the first half of the regular season, with Chapecoense setting up the two-legged final for the overall championship by triumphing in the second half of the Santa Catarina state league championship.

Chapecoense won the first leg 1-0, and after Avai won the second leg by the same scoreline Chapecoense's superior record over the whole season saw them retain their title.

It is Chapecoense's sixth title in the Santa Catarina league, which is a dress rehearsal for the Brazilian championship that starts next weekend.

The Brazilian team can win another title on Thursday in Colombia, playing in the Recopa Sudamericana final against Atletico Nacional.

Chapecoense won the first leg 2-1 at home.

The Recopa is between the champions of the Copa Libertadores and the Copa Sudamericana.

Chapecoense were awarded the Copa Sudamericana after the plane taking the team to play last season's final crashed in Medellin, killing 71 people.

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