Brazilian League Roundup, Mar. 14

Striker Robert scored three goals Sunday to lead Palmeiras to a 4-3

win over league-leading Santos in the Sao Paulo state championship.

Santos led 2-0 after Para scored in the 10th minute and

18-year-old Neymar scored in the 30th, tapping in a shot in front

of goal after a pass from Paulo Henrique Ganso.

But Robert scored twice in two minutes to level for

Palmeiras. He headed in a free kick from Cleiton Xavier in the 41st

minute, then drove in a left-foot shot from inside the area after

enterprising leadup work by Diego Souza, who took a long, looping

pass and heeled it to Armero.

Midfielder Souza’s header from Pierre’s free kick in the 56th

minute put Palmeiras ahead 3-2 before Santos rallied. Robinho gave

a perfect pass to Paulo Henrique, who crossed for Madson to score

from the left in the 80th.

Robert fired in a right-foot shot from well outside the area

for the winner in the 87th minute after a counter-attack by

Palmeiras.

In other Sao Paulo state matches on Sunday, Sao Paulo beat

Rio Branco, 2-1; Corinthians beat Santo Andre 2-1; Ponte Preta had

a 4-3 win over Bragantino; and Monte Azul beat Sertaozinho, 1-0.

On Saturday, Botafogo-SP beat Oeste 2-1; Rio Claro edged

Mirassol 2-1; Barueri beat Paulista 2-1; and Mogi Mirim beat Ituano

3-0.

In the Rio de Janeiro state championship, striker Adriano

converted a penalty in the 46th to give Flamengo a 1-0 win over

crosstown rival Vasco.

Adriano – who missed training much of the last week due to

personal problems – celebrated the goal by removing his jersey to

reveal a hand-scrawled message on a white undershirt which read:

“May God forgive these evil people.”

The shirt was an apparent reference to the constant chatter

on Brazil’s sports pages in the past week predicting Adriano’s

downfall. Earlier, Flamengo club director Marcos Braz said the

striker had a drinking problem, which was why he had been away from

the club.

In other Rio state matches on Sunday Botafogo beat Olaria

2-0, and Tigres defeated Americano 2-1. On Saturday, America drew

1-1 with Fluminense; Bangu beat Madureira 2-1; Boavista beat

Resende 4-1; and Duque de Caxias beat Friburguense 1-0.