RIO DE JANEIRO - Corinthians, in mourning
over the death of a young colleague and on the receiving end of
violent protests over a shock Libertadores Cup exit, appeased
angry fans with a 1-0 win over arch-rivals Palmeiras on Sunday.
Brazilian champions Fluminense squandered a 2-1 lead and
lost 3-2 to Botafogo while Ronaldinho scored his first goal for
Flamengo in other matches in Brazil's state championships.
Corinthians' victory in the Sao Paulo derby came after three
days of violent protests following Wednesday's upset by
Colombia's Deportes Tolima in the preliminary round of South
America's elite club competition.
Teenager William Morais was killed in the early hours of
Sunday trying to resist a mugger in the city of Belo Horizonte
where he was on loan to America-MG.
Right back Alessandro scored the goal that may begin to heal
Corinthians' wounds seven minutes from the end of the Paulista
state championship match.
Goalkeeper Julio Sergio kept the result safe with some
brilliant saves including a remarkable last-minute stop at point
blank range from Kleber.
"Because of what we were going through and the importance of
a victory, this was without doubt the best match of my career,"
the 26-year-old keeper told reporters.
"It's still not a happy time but this is a new start for
Palmeiras, trained by former Brazil and Portugal coach Luiz
Felipe Scolari, were the better team but were foiled time and
again by Julio Sergio's inspired goalkeeping.
Corinthians were without rested former Brazil players
Ronaldo, the team's captain, and Roberto Carlos whom fans hold
mainly responsible for the Libertadores Cup debacle.
In a pulsating Carioca (Rio de Janeiro) championship match,
Argentine German Herrera scored the 64th-minute winner for
Botafogo after Uruguay striker Sebastian Abreu had missed one
penalty then converted another in the space of four minutes
early in the second half.
Fluminense had taken a 2-1 half-time lead with two goals from
striker Rafael Moura after midfielder Renato Caja had put
Botafogo ahead at the Enganhao stadium in Rio.
The first half ended with both sides down to 10 men after
Botafogo's Marcelo Mattos and Fluminense's Colombian midfielder
Edwin Valencia were sent off for violent fouls.
In another Carioca championship match, Ronaldinho scored his
first goal for Flamengo in his second match since his transfer
from AC Milan last month.
Flamengo beat Boavista 3-2 after Ronaldinho had opened the
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