The Copa Libertadores tournament may not have the global profile or international superstars of its European cousin, the Champions League, but in terms of pure excitement and tension, the South American tournament can match it all the way. Wednesday evening brought to a close the 44th edition of the Copa, with San Lorenzo taking victory over Paraguay's Nacional in the final.
But who stood out most in the tournament that opened in February and took a break for the World Cup before coming back with a vengeance at the end of July? Which teams covered themselves in glory, and who was forced out of the Libertadores much earlier than expected?
In a year in which the Brazilian stranglehold on the Copa, which dated back to 2010, was finally broken by the Argentine giants, it is time to look back on the real winners and losers of a fascinating continental tournament.