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Ponte Preta take control of Sudamericana semi with São Paulo while Atlético Paranaense and Flamengo draw in Copa do Brasil final


Ponte Preta secured a surprise 3-1 first leg advantage over São Paulo in their Copa Sudamericana semi-final.

Paulo Henrique Ganso had given the hosts a 21 minute lead with a well placed shot from just outside the area. The game would turn, however, on the cusp of half-time.

Some neat interplay on the left set Uendel free in the area. He crossed low, with São Paulo defender Antônio Carlos directing the ball into his own net.

Ponte Preta then took the lead nine minutes into the second half. A corner fell to Elias. His right-foot shot was brilliantly saved by Rogério Ceni, but striker Leonardo reacted quickest to tap-in the rebound.

The Morumbi was stunned once more, as Ponte Preta broke to net what could be a decisive third. Uendel again found space down the left. His shot was tame, but a deflection off Wellington flicked it beyond Rogério Ceni. 

Ponte Preta have never progressed this far in continental competition. The second leg, is at the Estádio Vail Chaves is next Wednesday. The winner will face either Lanús or Libertad. Their first leg is played tonight.

The Copa do Brasil final first leg was less dramatic. Atlético Paranaense and Flamengo drew 1-1 in Curitiba.

Young forward Marcelo Cirino put the home side in front on 18 minutes. Flamengo took just 13 minutes to respond, with an equaliser from Amaral. The second leg is in six days time.


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