Gremio escape relegation with 3-0 win

Updated: 25 February 2007 08:48 IST

Gremio survived a tense last day in the Campeonato Brasiliero on Sunday, before eventually running out 3-0 winners over Corinthians in Porto Alegre.

Gremio escape relegation with 3-0 win

Porto Alegre, Brazil:

Gremio survived a tense last day in the Campeonato Brasiliero on Sunday, before eventually running out 3-0 winners over Corinthians in Porto Alegre and avoiding relegation from Brazil's top flight. A penalty from George in the 22nd minute was followed up by a second goal from Bruno after an hour, but it was not until substitute Anderson Lima scored an 84th minute free kick that Gremio were finally safe. Bahia were relegated after being thrashed 7-0 at home by champions Cruzeiro, and Fortaleza, who were beaten 2-0 at Ponte Preta, also dropped down to the second division. In the 26th and final round of the 2003 Brazilian championship, attention focused on the bottom of the table, where any two of six teams were in danger of being relegated to division two. 1996 champions Gremio were fighting for survival against mid-table Corinthians and were gifted a penalty in the 20th minute when Christian was tripped by Corinthians defender Marquinhos. Nineteen-year-old left back George stepped up to take the spot kick and, after Corinthians 'keeper Doni had parried onto a post, George somehow managed to back heel the ball into the net. It was just the start Adilson Batista's men needed. Gremio were ahead, but ought to have been two up by half-time - Christian got on the end of a Claudio Pittbul cross in the 33rd minute, only to hit a post with the goal at his mercy. The striker was fortunate that the miss didn't prove crucial. Corinthians, who were 15th at the start of the day, had little to play for and offered even less in the second half. Anderson's ineffectual challenge on Gremio's Bruno allowed the teenage midfielder to slip the ball past Doni and double the home side's lead on the hour. Then, with six minutes to go, substitute Anderson Lima curled in a free kick - and Gremio were safe from relegation and guaranteed top flight football for another year. There will still have to be a big improvement at the Olimpico however, as next season four teams, rather than two, go down. (AP)



Topics : Football
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