Corinthians clinches Brazilian league title after Vasco da Gama draw
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Vagner Love headed in a late goal to help Corinthians claim a sixth Brazilian league with three games to play after a 1-1 draw against Vasco da Gama on Thursday.
The only other challenger for the title, Atletico Mineiro, lost 4-2 at Sao Paulo to allow Corinthians' lead in the standings to increase to an insurmountable 12 points.
Despite having a defender sent off early in the second half, Vasco opened the scoring in Rio de Janeiro when defender Julio Cesar found the net in the 66th minute.
Former CSKA Moscow striker Love then leveled the scores for Corinthians in the 81st minute to give Corinthians 77 points from 35 matches.
Vasco, meanwhile, are 19th among the 20 teams in Brazil's top flight with only 34 points and run serious risk of being relegated.
Corinthians will celebrate their title at home on Sunday against rival Sao Paulo, which is fourth in the league with 56 points.
Corinthians last won the league 2011, with previous wins in 1990, 1998, 1999 and 2005. Cruzeiro won the 2013 and 2014 titles.
Corinthians midfielder Elias and Renato Augusto are among the best players of the tournament, which has let to them being drafted into Brazil coach Dunga's squad for the latest South American World Cup qualifiers.