Brazil secured a morale-boosting 4-0 victory over Uruguay, their first win against their neighbours for 33 years, to boost their prospects of a place at the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™.
The result means Brazil take the lead in the South American Zone with 24 points alongside Paraguay, who host Chile tomorrow. Uruguay remain in the fifth spot with 17 points.
A Seleção took advantage of their only two chances in the first half but were the stronger side despite Washington Tabarez's team wasting several decent chances. After struggling during the opening stages, Brazil took the lead when Barcelona's Dani Alves shot from outside the box and goalkeeper Sebastian Viera failed in his attempt to control the ball with his chest.
Jorge Martinez almost equalised with a cross, but Dani Alves cleared off the line before Sebastian Eguren brushed the post with a header. It was Brazil who added to their score though, Juan connecting with Elano's cross in the 32nd minute to double their advantage.
Julio Cesar was twice called into action just before the break and was able to save on both occasions when first Alvaro Pereira and then Luis Suarez found themselves in one-on-one situations. Brazil made it three on the counter-attack shortly after the restart when Luis Fabiano beat Viera, but they were reduced to 10 men on the hour when the same man was adjudged to have dived in the area and picked up his second yellow of the match.
Kaka netted a fourth with a penalty before Maximiliano Pereira evened up the numbers, the midfielder shown the red card after he axed down Ramires.