By Lisa Flueckiger, Senior Contributing Reporter

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Rio football (soccer) clubs Fluminense and Botafogo both won their respective games 1-0 to kick off this year’s Brasileirão, the Brazilian national football league. In the same round Flamengo lost their game against São Paulo FC, while Vasco drew against Goiás.

Fluminense win against Joinville with 1-0, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil News
Fluminense win against Joinville with 1-0, photo by Nelson Perez/Divulgação FFC.

The Brasileirão kicked off this weekend with the first round of games of a total of 38. Three of the four big Rio clubs, Fluminense, Flamengo and Vasco, play in the highest league, the Série A. The fourth club Botafogo had been relegated at the end of last season and currently plays in the second league, the Série B.

Fluminense faced promoted team Joinville at the Maracanã on Saturday (May 9th). Yet, the club from Santa Catarina put up a fight, even though one of their players was sent off after 22 minutes. It took Flu until the ending minutes to finally score and secure three points.

Flamengo played São Paulo FC at the Morumbi on Sunday, May 10th, and it was the home team who had the better part of most of the game. Luis Fabiano scored the first goal for the Paulistas after 73 minutes and Alexandre Pato followed up with the second one just six minutes later. Everton then scored for Flamengo in the last minutes of the game for the end result of 2-1.

The game between Vasco da Gama and Goiás at the São Januário on Sunday was the only match this round where no goals were conceded by either team. It was a rightful 0-0, as both teams showed difficulties in creating chances and made a lot of errors.

In other games, Palmeiras drew with Atlético-MG with a score of 2-2, while 2014 champion Cruzeiro lost their game against Corinthians with 0-1. Sport won their game against Figueirense with 4-1 and are the first leader of this year’s championship.

In the Série B, Botafogo won their opening game against former Série C club Paysandu narrowly with 1-0. Rodrigo Pimpão was the only goal scorer after a great pass by Carleto in the 86th minute.

In the next round Fluminense will face 2014 Copa Brasil champion Atlético-MG at Brasília’s Mane Garrincha stadium, while Flamengo play Sport at the Maracanã and Vasco faces Figueirense abroad, all on Sunday May 17th. The day before, Botafogo will play their second game against CRB at the Engenhão.

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