Atletico PR beat Ponte Preta 3-2

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src=' ' class='caption'> Atletico Paranaense beat Ponte Preta 3-2 on Sunday to stay two points clear at the top of the Brazilian Championship.

Updated: February 25, 2007 10:04 IST
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Campinas City:

Two goals from Washington helped Atletico Paranaense to a 3-2 victory away at Ponte Preta on Sunday to keep them two points clear at the top of the Brazilian Championship. With four games remaining, Atletico have 81 points, two ahead of second-placed Santos. Brazilian Championship leaders Atletico Paranaense travelled to Ponte Preta on Sunday. Coming into the game with a two point advantage over second-placed Santos, Atletico needed a victory to ensure they would stay top. It took them just 10 minutes to find the opening goal. A fantastic move culminated in Denis Marques running on to Fernando's chip into the box, before squaring for Washington to tap in on the line. And one-nil became two-nil on the half hour mark - again a beautifully-worked goal. Marinho found Fernandinho, and the defender then continued on to provide the headed finish at the near post. Atletico PR turning on the style - and certainly looking like champions in waiting. The home side pulled one back six minutes into the second half. Roger's shot was parried by goalkeeper Diego, but the ball fell kindly to Alecsandro - and the striker poked home to make it 2-1. Atletico PR's two-goal margin was restored with 12 minutes remaining. Washington scoring his second of the game with a powerful low free-kick that beat Aranho in the Ponte Preta goal, and went in off the post. Atletico seemed determined to make life as difficult as possible for themselves, with Ponte Preta pulling a goal back once again in the 85th minute. Atletico's marking was non-existent as Alexandre helped on Danilo's floated free-kick to Alecsandro - and he nodded in for his second of the match. But the visitors held on for a deserved victory, which keeps them two points clear of Santos, who also won on Sunday. Ponte Preta are ninth. Four rounds of matches remain. (AP)

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