Monday, 2 November 2009

Campeonato Brasileiro Série A Week 33

Avaí 2-0 Atlético Paranaense
São Paulo 1-0 Barueri
Flamengo 1-0 Santos
Goiás 2-3 Atlético Miniero
Internacional 0-1 Botafogo
Palmeiras 2-2 Corinthians
Coritiba 1-0 Vitória
Cruzeiro 2-3 Fluminense
Santo André 2-0 Grêmio
Náutico 3-2 Sport Recife

The drama continues abound in the Brasileiro with movement again this week at both ends of the table. It was also a round of early goals being decisive in games as well. Of the leading contenders, São Paulo were first into action on Saturday they over came Barueri at the Morumbi. Jorge Wágner with the goal with just 6 minutes on the clock to put São Paulo top on Saturday night. Big rivals Palmeiras squared up to local rivals Corinthians, again the game was played on neutral territory at Presidente Prudente for the Paulista Derby, and the "home side" needing a win to take and outright lead at the top of the table. Unfortunately for the Big Green, Ronaldo had other ideas. After goalkeeper Marcos was sent off for Palmeiras he put Corinthians into the lead twice, firstly 6 minutes before half time before Danilo levelled matters. Then Ronaldo struck 20 minutes into the second half before Mauricio grabbed a much needed point with the equaliser 7 minutes from time. Palmeiras remain top on goal difference, the teams have identical records but Palmeiras are 3 goals better off on goal difference.

Of the other title contenders it was a very mixed weekend of results. Atlético-MG remain third after a very hard fought win at Goiás. It was all going Atlético-MG's way When they stormed into a 2 goal lead inside 20 minutes. Ricardinho with the first before Éder Luís grabbed his 11th of the season to double the lead. Goiás were level by half time, a stunning fightback in the last three minutes before half time with goals from Julio César and Leandro Euzebio. Ernando was then sent off for Goiás just after half time before Diego Tardelli grabbed his 18th of the season form the penalty spot, and the winner for Atlético-MG with 22 minutes left. Flamengo crept into a Libertadores spot after a 6th minute goal from Adriano, his 17th of the season, saw them overcome Santos at the Maracanã and climb above Internacional who were stunned by Botafogo at the Beira-Rio. Juninho claimed the only goal of the game, a snorter of a free kick, with just two minutes on the clock and Botafogo held on for a valuable win, desipte the dismissal of Andre Lima for two bookable offences.

At the wrong end of the table Fluminense's fight against the drop continues after a dramatic come from behind win at the Mineirão against Cruzeiro. It snapped Cruzeiro's 7 game winning strak and probably knocked them out of the title race. It was all going the home sides way as they led 2-0 through goals from Jonathan and Wellington Paulista in the first half hour. Fluminense though, fought back. 2 goals in three second half minutes from Gum and Fred levelled things before the former Lyon striker grabbed the winner 19 minutes from time. After scoring both goals Fred "did a Tevez" and refused to celebrate his goals, he was with Cruzeiro prior to going to France. Grêmio's travel sickness continued as they were downed by Santo André. Nunes struck for the third consecutive game to put Santo André ahead before a Rafael Marques own goal sealed Grêmio's fate.

Atlético-PR are now nervously looking over their shoulders after a 2-0 reverse at Avaí, who should be set now for a second season in Série A. Rogelio put them ahead with 7 minutes on the clock and William's spectacular bicycle kick made the game safe 14 minutes from time. Coritiba swap places in the table with local rivals Atlético-PR after a single goal from Pereira with 21 minutes on the clock was enough to see off Vitória. In the big relegation clash, Sport fell to the bottom of the table after being defeated by local rivals Náutico in the Clássico dos Clássicos. A thrilling game in Recife saw Sport twice fight back from a goal down. Bruno Miniero continued his recent run of goals to put Náutico ahead with 4 minutes on the clock. Sport were level 4 minutes later through Vandinho but Náutico went into the break ahead thanks to Carlinhos Bala. Wilson then levelled again for Sport on the hour but four minutes later Irenio grabbed a crucial winner for Náutico to leave them with a fighting change of escaping the drop whilst Sport now seem doomed.

Now might be a good time to explain how all the tie breakers work in the league

The tie-breakers in Brazil’s Série A are:

1) number of victories
2) goal difference
3) goals scored
4) head-to-head
5) lower number of red cards
6) lower number of yellow cards
7) drawing lots

If it’s head-to-head between two clubs, their two games are treated like a cup tie, with the away goals rule. Also, the championship and the relegation spots can’t be decided by drawing lots — they would hold another game in a neutral venue.

Week 34 begins on Wednesday night when São Paulo enter the Grêmio graveyard, it's going to be a big ask if they are to claim a win there as Grêmio have dropped only 6 points at home all season. Botafogo and Coritiba is the big relegation battle of the weekend whilst Fluminense entertain leaders Palmeiras.

Grêmio x São Paulo
Santos x Náutico
Vitória x Avaí
Sport Recife x Cruzeiro
Corinthians x Santo André
Atlético Miniero x Flamengo
Fluminense x Palmeiras
Botafogo x Coritiba
Atlético Paranaense x Goiás
Barueri x Internacional

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