The fixtures and format have been released for the 2011 Campeonato Paulista Série A1 and there is a slight change to the format we have witnessed in recent years. Twenty teams will contest the division as usual in a single round robin format and the bottom four teams will be relegated to Série A2 at the end of the season.
The big change comes in the play offs, which have have been extended to eight teams. The first round will be single elimination on a 1 v 8; 2 v 7; 3 v 6; 4 v 5 format. The winners then progress to the semi finals and again that will be a single elimination game. The final as ever will be played over two games to end the season on May 15th.
The four promoted clubs who take their place in the big time next season are Guaratinguetá (who we featured in the national Série B round-up not too long ago), São Bernardo, Noroeste and Linense, the champions of Série A2 this year.
Also the competition will feature the two extra officials situated behind the goal line, as seen in the Champions and Europa League competitions.
The league starts on January 16 and the opening round looked like this as Santos defend the crown they won this year.
Linense x Santos
Mogi Mirim x São Paulo
Corinthians x Portuguesa
Palmeiras x Botafogo SP
Noroeste x Santo André
Guaratinguetá x Bragantino
São Bernardo x Grêmio Prudente
Mirassol x Ponte Preta
Paulista x Ituano
Oeste x São Caetano
For a full list of fixtures click here