Duel is a rollercoaster against regularity

São Paulo plays this Saturday (6th), for the Brazilian Championship, with the need to win again in the tournament. Ahead, Rogério Ceni’s team will have a Flamengo front that presents everything the São Paulo club wants to have: regularity, squad and victories. The game takes place at 8:30 pm (Brasília time), at Morumbi.

The feeling in the São Paulo Tricolor is one of urgency. After a Brazilian start with good performances, injuries and advances in the South American Championship and in the Copa do Brasil caused the team to have a drop in performance that has worried Ceni.

For the Brazilian, the team has not won for five games. If we consider the last ten matches for the Brasileirão, the record of just two wins, three defeats and five draws indicates that the club will have difficulties to get closer to the G4, which would guarantee it a spot in the group stage of Libertadores in 2023, an objective set by Roger for this season.

“We are trying to win the next game. I always said that the priority was the Brazilian Championship. There came a time when we had to repeat many players. AND ankle injuries, trauma injuries, have become muscle injuries by the repetition of many players. If I put the same players in 60 hours to play against Flamengo, Atlético-GO did it, beat Corinthians and repeated the players at Maracanã [e perdeu por 4 a 1]. We have to have energy. AND that’s what we’re going to try to do for this game”, analyzed the tricolor commander after the victory over Ceará, for the Copa Sudamericana.

In the last 30 points played by São Paulo at Nacional, the team won 11. There were only two victories in the period – against América-MG, 1-0, at Morumbi, and against Atlético-GO, 2-1, away From home. In addition, they drew five times, and were defeated by Botafogo, Palmeiras and, more recently, Athletico-PR.

The low use, of just over 36% of the points, worries even more when the team looks at the table of the next clashes. After Flamengo, there’s Red Bull Bragantino, at home, and Santos, away. Between the Brasileirão duels, it still decides the spots in the South American and Copa do Brasil against Ceará and América-MG, respectively. In the cups, the performance goes beyond satisfactory. For the Copa do Brasil, he eliminated Palmeiras at the rival’s house and opened an advantage against América-MG by winning the first game by 1 to 0 in Morumbi. In Sul-Americana, a new 1-0, now against Ceará, which allows the team to draw in the two competitions that advances to the semifinals.

Although he left the field defeated only four times in the 20 matches he made so far in the Brasileirão, one of those defeats was against Flamengo. In the first round, away from home, Tricolor was easy prey for the carioca team and lost by 3 to 1. The red-black, even, comes from four consecutive triumphs.

Ceni showed dissatisfaction with the team’s performance. Recently, the coach pointed out that, to fight for the spot in Libertadores, he would have to have scored at least 30 points in the first round. Currently, the team has 26 points and is closer to the relegation zone (six points) than the G4 (eight).

“We cannot give up the Brazilian. The Brazilian is what keeps everyone going. Nobody wants to fight for relegation. And we have a very difficult sequence. There are two difficult games, against Red Bull, who only play one competition, and Flamengo, who have three teams”, said Ceni.

With decisive matches in the middle of next week – Tricolor for Sudamericana and Flamengo for Libertadores – the two coaches will spare their main players. São Paulo could have the return of Reinaldo and Patrick. Flamengo should keep the same team that thrashed Atlético-GO in the last round.

After a turbulent start, Fla has only grown

Dorival Júnior needed just over 50 days to ‘clean up the house’ in Flamengo. The multi-champion squad lived months of oscillation under the command of Paulo Sousa, who ended up being fired in June after a defeat to Red Bull Bragantino.

Hired almost 24 hours later, the new coach took over without even training the team and lost to Internacional in Beira-Rio. From there to here, Dorival changed the backstage, made the cast find the good phase and traces paths for the season.

The coach’s strategy is to bring the confidence of all the players in the squad. There were many individual and collective conversations until the results were seen in the field.

They are 70% of use in the period of 16 games, in the midst of a shooting in the cast. In the team said to be a starter, Dorival fulfilled the old desire and made the duo between Gabi and Pedro in attack come true. In the defense, the unlikely Léo Pereira consolidated himself alongside David Luiz.

The good performances bring back a Flamengo that seemed lost. Now, Rubro-Negro is in the quarterfinals of the Copa do Brasil and Libertadores, in addition to rehearsing a reaction in the Brasileirão and, even, can reach the G4 already in this round.


Competition: Brazilian Championship – 21st round
Date and time: August 6, 2022 (Saturday), at 8:30 pm (Brasília time)
Place: Morumbi Stadium, in São Paulo (SP)
Referee: Ramon Abatti Abel (SC)
Auxiliaries: Kleber Lucio Gil (FIFA / SC) and Alex dos Santos (SC)
VAR: Adriano Milczvski (PR)

SAO PAULO: Felipe Alves; Rafinha, Diego Costa and Leo; Moreira, Pablo Maia, Talles Costa, Galoppo and Reinaldo; Patrick and Calleri. Technician: Rogerio Ceni.

FLAMENGO: Saints; Matheuzinho, Fabrício Bruno, Pablo and Ayrton Lucas; Diego, Vidal and Victor Hugo; Lázaro, Marinho and Everton Cebolinha. Technician: Dorival Junior.

About Abhishek Pratap

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