RIO DE JANEIRO - Brazil striker Leandro
Damiao scored with a brilliant overhead volley to give 10-man
Internacional a 2-2 draw with Flamengo in a superb Brazilian
championship match on Sunday.
The 22-year-old volleyed the ball with an overhead bicycle-kick into the top right-hand corner of goalkeeper Felipe's net
in the 78th minute to deny Flamengo the victory that would have
put them level with Corinthians at the top of the standings.
"The ball came to me very quickly, I managed to be well
positioned to score a beautiful goal [but] the important thing
is to help the team get results," Damiao told reporters.
Corinthians have 37 points following a surprise 2-0 home
defeat by modest Figueirense on Saturday with Flamengo on 35.
Vasco da Gama and Sao Paulo are both a point further back.
Flamengo had lost their unbeaten record in a shock 4-1 home
defeat by Atletico Paranaense on Thursday without the suspended
Ronaldinho, but he returned on Sunday to put Flamengo ahead with
a trademark free-kick in the 25th minute.
Inter, despite having Argentine midfielder Pablo Guinazu
sent off for a second booking before half-time, equalised six
minutes into the second half at their Beira-Rio stadium in Porto
Alegre when defender Indio scored from Damiao's smart backheel.
Substitute Jael put Flamengo ahead again with his first
touch on the hour before Damiao's equaliser for his 32nd goal of
the year in club competitions, the best in Brazil this season.
Copa Brasil winners Vasco were held 1-1 at home by Brazilian
champions Fluminense. Former Olympique Lyon midfielder Juninho
put Vasco ahead with a first-half penalty but striker Rafael
Moura equalised after the interval.
Sao Paulo drew 1-1 with local rivals Palmeiras, taking the
lead with a lob by striker Dagoberto over goalkeeper Marcos from
former Brazil forward Rivaldo's pass. Central defender Henrique
equalised for Luis Felipe Scolari's team.
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