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From left to right: Adriano (Flamengo), Kléber (Cruzeiro), Dentinho (Corinthians), Nilmar (Internacional), Fred (Fluminense)

This is it. The main event. The one thing we all have been waiting for. (well, I have!)

The Campeonato Brasileiro, the Brazilian National Tournament has just started. And this year promises to be the best one in a looooooong time. This year will be the year of the forwards, the year of many, many goals.

Of the four forwards playing for the Brazilian national team in the 2006 World Cup, three of them are back in Brazil. Adriano, in Flamengo. Ronaldo in Corinthians. Fred in Fluminense. Will this be year that will crown one of the three?

Or will it be a year of the new-comers, the crop of young talent that was not uprooted to Europe as soon as they knew which way the goal was, (Thank you, economic crisis.) like Nilmar and Taison, from Internacional, Keirrison from Palmeiras, Dentinho of Corinthians…

The format is simple: 20 teams, each time playing every other team twice, in 38 rounds that drag until December. 3 points for a win, a point for each team for a draw, no point for a loss. Whomever has more points in the end wins.


Left to Right, top to Bottom: Atlético-Mineiro, Atlético Paranaense, Avaí, Barueri, Botafogo, Corinthians, Coritiba, Cruzeiro, Flamengo, Fluminense, Goiás, Grêmio, Internacional, Náutico, Palmeiras, Santo André, Santos, São Paulo, Sport, Vitória.

First Round: Saturday May8 and Sunday May 9

(When reading soccer scores, the first name is whomever is the host team)

Palmeiras 2×1 Coritiba
Avaí 2×2 Atlético-MG
Sport 1×1 Barueri
Corinthians 0x1 Internacional
Cruzeiro 2×0 Flamengo
Fluminense 1×0 São Paulo
Atlético-PR 0x2 Vitória
Santo André 1×1 Botafogo
Goiás 3×3 Náutico
Grêmio 1×1 Santos

And to end, the most beautiful goals of the tournament so far, including a painting by Nilmar, from Internacional.