Monday, 15 November 2010

Campeonato Brasileiro Série A Week 35

Ceará 2-2 Botafogo
Corinthians 1-0 Cruzeiro
Santos 0-0 Grêmio
Atlético Mineiro 4-1 Flamengo
Guarani 1-1 Vitória
Internacional 2-3 Avaí
Atlético Goianiense 3-0 Palmeiras
Fluminense 1-1 Goiás
Vasco da Gama 1-1 São Paulo
Atlético Paranaense 2-1 Prudente

The round actually started last Wednesday at the Castelão as Botofogo's outside hopes of taking the title were probably dashed by their 17th draw of the season. The visitors took the lead through Sebastian Abreu's 10th goal of the season with 11 minutes on the clock but the Alvinegro were behind by half time. Magno Alves levelled for Ceará half way through the half and Geraldo had them in front 10 minutes before the break. A second of the game from Abreu levelled things but Botafogo couldn't find a winner, despite Ceará being reduced to ten after the dismissal Michel three minutes from time.

On Saturday there was huge controversy in the big one at the Pacaembu as Corinthians took a giant stride to winning the title. It was a coolly taken last minute penalty from Ronaldo that separated the sides after he'd been fouled by Gil in the box. The camera angles seemed to give a different impression on the foul but the Cruzeiro players were aggrieved by the decision as Gil was also dismissed for a second bookable offence. Grêmio still remain in the hunt for a Libertadores spot after they claimed a point at the Vila Belmiro against Santos. It didn't start well for Grêmio when they had top scorer Jonas sent off for an elbow after 18 minutes but they had goalkeeper Victor to thank after his penalty save from Eduardo kept the game scoreless. In the final Saturday game, Atlético-MG took a huge stride to safety and left Flamengo nervously looking over their shoulder after a resounding 4-1 win in Sete Lagoas. Former Fla player Obina put the home side ahead ten minutes before the break before Renan Oliveira doubled the lead a minute before the break Another former Fla man, Diego Tardelli made it three half way through the second half before a second from Renan two minutes later put the icing on the cake. Marquinhos pulled a goal back for Flamengo fifteen minutes from time but it was meter consolation for the visitors.

In another huge relegation clash Vitória have their heads just above the relegation zone after a 1-1 draw with Guarani. Vitória took the lead twelve minutes from time through Adailton but the lead last just two minutes before Geovane levelled. A point is a point, but it wasn't much use to either team as Guarani fell into the relegation zone. Avaí gave themselves hope of survival after a stunning 3-2 victory at the Beira-Rio against Internacional. Avaí were ahead inside a minute after a stunning goal from Patric and the doubled their lead seven minutes before the break through Batista. Inter hit back after half time, substitute Leandro Damião halved the nine minutes after the break before Rafael Sóbis levelled on the hour. Three minutes later though, Avaí were ahead again through Robinho and they held on to secure a crucial win. Atlético-GO eased their relegation worries a little after a comfortable victory over a Palmeiras side that could be putting all it's eggs in the Sudamericana basket. Gilson put Atlético-GO ahead after half an hour and Robston doubled the lead nine minutes after the break. Palmeiras then had Danilo sent off on the hour before a second from Robston two minutes later wrapped up the points and give Atlético-GO a chance of beating the drop

In the late Sunday games, Fluminense knew a victory over relegation threatened Goiás was take them back to the top of the table. However it was the visitors, still on a high from the midweek Sudamericana victory, who made all the running at the Engenhão. They took the lead with 19 minutes on the clock through midweek hero Rafael Moura and the Tricolor were booed off at half time. They eventually got level just six minutes before time when Dario Conca converted from the penalty spot, but Flu relinquished top spot in the table. São Paulo's outside chance of getting into the frame for the last Libertadores spot seems to be over after they were held at the São Januário by Vasco da Gama. The home side took the lead on the hour through on loan stiker Éder Luís but they were pegged back ten minutes later by Lucas Gaúcho. The point was enough to ensure that Vasco will survive for a second season in the top flight. The relegation fight though is over for Prudente after they were relegated to Série B after defeat at the Arena de Baixada against Atlético-PR. Prudente went behind after 21 minutes when Paulo Baier converted from the penalty spot and they didn't help their cause when Wesley was sent off four minutes later. Despite being a man short Willian José levelled for Prudente on the half hour and a point would have been just enough to keep them afloat. Disasater struck for Prudente in injury time when Paulo Baier got his second of the game to keep Atlético-PR in the hunt for a Libertadores spot and condemn Prudente to second tier football next year.

So three games to go in this years championship as the title and relegation race hots up. They line up like this with the top three games taking place on Saturday

Flamengo x Guarani
Prudente x Ceará
Grêmio x Atlético Paranaense
São Paulo x Fluminense
Palmeiras x Atlético Mineiro
Botafogo x Internacional
Vitória x Corinthians
Cruzeiro x Vasco da Gama
Goiás x Santos
Avaí x Atlético Goianiense

With two weeks to go in the Série B season Coritiba will return as Champions if they win their game at Icasa on Saturday night. A 3-0 for Bahia against Portuguesa in the last week also sees them into the top flight next season. Figuerense will also be in the top flight next season after despite a defeat to Coritiba, Portuguesa's defeat at Bahia meaning they cannot now be caught. The final promotion spot is currently in the hands of América-MG who lead Portuguesa and Sport Recife by three points in the table with six to play for. At the other end of the table Santo André are facing back to back relegation in the face, they currenlty lie six points adrift of safety but they can still catch Guaratinguetá in 16th. Ipatinga, Brasiliense and América-RN occupy the other relegation spots.

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