Gremio give Luiz Felipe Scolari first win, Fred fluffs Flu penalty
Rio: Former Brazil coach Luiz Felipe Scolari enjoyed his first win since returning to Gremio and Fluminense forward Fred missed a penalty in their 2-0 defeat against Botafogo in the Brazilian championship.
Gremio beat Criciuma 2-0 with a Luan penalty converted after 10 minutes and a long-range effort by Lucas Coelho three minutes into the second half of Sunday`s game, moving them up to eighth in the 20-team table.
Scolari`s first game with Gremio, where he has taken charge for the third time, had ended in a 2-0 defeat to arch-rivals Internacional.
"You can`t do anything in 15 to 20 days," said Scolari, Brazil`s coach at the World Cup when they suffered a 7-1 defeat to Germany in the semi-final.
"The most important thing today was to remember the Gremio spirit... soul, fight, decisiveness, and will to win.
"It wasn`t a brilliant win, it was a well-balanced game, but I was satisfied with the determination and the points are important because we are not in a comfortable position," added Scolari, whose team are still only eight points clear of the relegation zone.
Botafogo, struggling to pay wages after the club`s accounts were frozen by Brazilian authorities, forgot their financial troubles with a 2-0 win over Fluminense.
Daniel and Pablo Zeballos scored in a three-minute spell in the second half for Botafogo while Fred, who had a miserable World Cup for Brazil when he was hounded by home fans, fired a penalty high over the crossbar late in the game. Cruzeiro stayed top with a 3-0 win over Santos, who have lost their two matches in the competition and have not scored since Robinho returned to the club from AC Milan.
Marcelo Moreno, Ricardo Goulart and former Real Madrid, AS Roma and Malaga player Julio Baptista shared the goals for Cruzeiro, who have 33 points from 15 games, two ahead of Internacional.