By Robbie Blakeley, Senior Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Botafogo and Flamengo both picked up three points in the 28th round of the Campeonato Brasileiro this past weekend. However Fluminense’s push to qualify for the Copa Libertadores were dealt a massive blow with a loss to Internacional.
Botafogo gave their chances of avoiding relegation an enormous push with a vital 1-0 win over Corinthians at the Arena Amazônia. An inspired night from goalkeeper Helton Leite helped the Alivnegro keep a clean sheet, with Wallyson converting a penalty in the first half to separate the sides.
Fogo played with ten men for the final twenty minutes after midfielder Bolatti was dismissed for two bookable offenses. Yet the Cariocas put in a heroic shift to deny their Paulista opponents.
In Rio, Flamengo comprehensively beat league leaders 3-0 at the Maracanã. It was the Minas club’s second successive defeat, while the Rubro-Negro have put even more daylight between themselves and the Z-4 after recording two wins on the bounce. Everton Ribeiro and Ricardo Goulart were missing for the visitors, away on Seleção duty, and their creativity and offensive output were sorely missed.
Marcelo Moreno wasted Cruzeiro’s best chance of the first half after being set up by Egídio, and Fla went in a goal up at the break. On 56 minutes, Mengão doubled their lead. A defensive mix-up between Manoel and Fábio allowed Canteros to nip in and touch the ball home. Six minutes later, the result was beyond doubt, Alecsandro sent in a cross and Gabriel’s first-time finish made it 3-0.
Finally, Fluminense lost 2-1 to Internacional at the Estádio Beira-Rio to leave their G-4 hopes hanging by a thread. Two assists from Argentine playmaker Andres d’Alessandro helped the Gaúchos to victory. Alex put Inter ahead on 52 minutes before Fred leveled for the Tricolor five minutes from time. Then just two minutes later Valdivia struck the winner after being put through by the Inter no. 10.
Campeonato Brasileiro Round 28 Results in Full:
Botafogo 1-0 Corinthians
Goiás 3-0 Coritiba
Palmeiras 2-1 Grêmio
Flamengo 3-0 Cruzeiro
Atlético-MG 1-0 São Paulo
Bahia 0-1 Chapecoense
Internacional 2-1 Fluminense
Sport Recife 1-2 Vitória
Atlético-PR 3-0 Figueirense
Criciúma 3-0 Santos