SAO PAULO (AP) — Brazil striker Fred scored an early goal to help Fluminense defeat Flamengo 2-0 and stay near the top of the Brazilian league on Sunday.
Fluminense has nine points after four rounds, one point behind leader Internacional, which rallied to beat Atletico Paranaense 2-1 on Saturday thanks to a goal by Argentine midfielder Andres D'Alessandro.
Corinthians was atop the table heading into the weekend but conceded a late equalizer in a 1-1 draw against Sao Paulo, dropping to third place, two points behind Inter.
Defending champion Cruzeiro lost 2-1 to Atletico Mineiro for its first defeat of the championship, dropping to fifth place. Bolivian striker Marcelo Moreno scored the goal for Cruzeiro, which rested regular starters for the Copa Libertadores.
Argentine striker Barcos scored twice as seventh-placed Gremio defeated Chapecoense 2-1 in Chapeco for its second win.
Fred put Fluminense ahead just 10 minutes into the match at the Maracana Stadium, and substitute striker Chiquinho sealed the victory in a breakaway in the 88th.
"We knew how to be aggressive and our counterattacks worked well in the end," said Fred, Brazil's likely starter at the World Cup next month.
Flamengo, Brazil's most popular club, has won only one match and is near the bottom of the 20-team standings.
Fluminense and Internacional are the only teams with three victories after four rounds.
Internacional, still unbeaten, went down a goal in the 53rd at the Beira-Rio Stadium on Saturday in Porto Alegre, but D'Alessandro struck a perfect low shot from outside the box to equalize the match just two minutes later. Midfielder Alan Patrick scored the winner in the 68th with a powerful left-footer into the top corner.
The match in front of nearly 35,000 fans marked the last official test event at the Beira-Rio, which will host five World Cup matches.
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