Brazilian Futebol

News and opinion about Brazilian football (soccer).

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Internacional gets important win

Not even the fact that the team played without most of its regulars seemed to matter for Internacional on Sunday. The team still played well and managed an important 2-0 win over Palmeiras at the Beira Rio Stadium in Porto Alegre to reach 6 points and the lead atop the standings in the 2009 Brazilian Serie A. Danny Morais and D’Alessandro scored for the locals in front of close to 30,000 fans, happy to see the second win in as many games. Inter decided to rest some of its regulars due to the second leg of its quarterfinal matchup against Flamengo, for the Brazilian Cup, scheduled for Wednesday.

Vitoria also has six points in two games, after beating Sport 1-0 at home, in front of just 4,500 people. Maybe fans will start believing in the team after these first wins to start the championship and show up in larger numbers in the next home game?

Speaking of few fans, only 2,500 hundred cared enough to see Barueri host Fluminense. In this case, however, it seems that the people who stayed home knew better, as both teams played out a boring scoreless draw.

It seems that the Brazilian Serie A will finally have a new champion this year, after three-time defending champion Sao Paulo remains winless after a couple of games. This time around, the team could only savage a point in a 2-2 home tie against Atletico Paranaense. Decimated by injuries to regular players and poor performances by other key members of the team, Sao Paulo just hopes to get things going again before having to face Cruzeiro next week in the Copa Libertadores quarterfinal.

Cruzeiro, by the way, went to Recife and lost 2-0 to Nautico. Santos built a 2-0 lead over Goias at home but ended up surrendering a 3-3 tie in a very entertaining game. Botafogo and Corinthians also created quite a few scoring chances, but had to settle to a 0-0 draw at the Engenhao in Rio de Janeiro.

Coritiba scored first but ended up losing 4-2 to Santo Andre at home, while Flamengo could not score and drew Avai at home, 0-0. Finally, Gremio went to Belo Horizonte and lost to Atletico Mineiro 2-1, in a personal revenge for coach Celso Roth against the team that had fired him earlier this year. Atletico's winning goal came in injury time of the second half, on a controversial penalty kick.

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