By Robbie Blakeley, Senior Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – A brace from Fred and another strike from Walter gave Fluminense a 3-0 win over Tupi-MG last night in the Copa do Brasil. The margin of the result – a win by two goals or more away from home – meant Flu passed into the third round without the need for a home leg.
New coach Cristovão Borges continued his excellent start to life at Laranjeiras. In three games the side have netted eleven goals without conceding.
The side played expansive, imaginative football, a far cry from the style of play under former coach Renato Gaúcho. Though it must also be recognized Fluminense are yet to face a stern challenge under Borges’ stewardship.
Fluminense’s control was absolute over limited opponents. From the moment Fred opened the scoring on 23 minutes there only looked one winner, the result simply a matter of how many the Tricolor could score. Just after the half-hour, Fred doubled Flu’s lead. Sóbis failed to connect properly with Wágner’s cross and Fred slammed home the rebound.
In the second half, a 2-0 lead sufficient to move to the third round, the game’s tempo dipped slightly. Fred, Wágner, Rafael Sóbis and Conca were all guilty of profligacy in front of goal in a lethargic start to the second period. Then nine minutes from time Flu got their third, combining with Conca, Walter finished for his seventh of the season.
Fluminense now await the winner of América-RN and Náutico to find out their third round opponent. Flu travel to face Palmeiras on Saturday in the Campeonato Brasileiro.
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