By Robbie Blakeley, Contributing Sports Reporter

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL -  The Taça Rio, the second stage of the Rio state football (soccer) championship, kicked off last week and it was a familiar tale for Rio’s traditional ‘big four’. The format is identical to the recently finished Taça Guanabara, but with Flamengo and Vasco swapping opponents with Fluminense and Botafogo.

While Flamengo, the Guanabara champions, Fluminense and Botafogo all started the new competition with routine victories, Vasco da Gama again faltered . . .

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