Corinthians, Flamengo both held
Corinthians and Flamengo both missed the chance to pull clear of the other at the top of the Campeonato as they were held to 2-2 draws on Sunday.
Ceara snatched a late equaliser to draw away to Corinthians, while Flamengo led 2-0 against Figueirense before being pegged back.
Corinthians went ahead after 24 minutes against Ceara when Paulinho's 20-yard drive went under goalkeeper Diego, who appeared to be at fault. The home defence then hesitated badly to allow Ceara striker Oswaldo through for a leveller on the half-hour mark, but Corinthians were back in front a minute later thanks to a majestic left-footed 30-yard shot from Alex into the top left corner. That looked like being enough, but midfielder Rudnei poached a close-range equaliser for mid-table Ceara with six minutes remaining.
Corinthians remain level on points with Flamengo at the top of the table, both with 34 from 16 games, but Corinthians lead the way on games won - 10 to nine.
Flamengo are still unbeaten, but they will know they should have converted their lead over Figueirense into three points. Headed goals from Deivid in the 36th and 50th minutes put Flamengo in charge, but Somalia drilled a reply after 53 minutes and Edson headed an equaliser with 20 minutes to play.
Vasco da Gama climbed above Botafogo to reach fourth place in the table with a 1-0 success over Palmeiras, with substitute Bernardo curling a 30-yard free-kick for the winner in the 80th minute.
Goals from Bill (32), Rafinha (76) and Leonardo (89) - a penalty - earned Coritiba a 3-0 home win over Atletico Mineiro, who had Serginho sent off.
Gremio beat Fluminense 2-1, despite going behind to Fred's header after 24 minutes. Marquinhos replied with a deflected equaliser after 30 minutes and a winner direct from a 25-yard free-kick just before half-time.
Bahia and Internacional both had a player sent off in a heated 1-1 draw. Leandro Damiao put Internacional ahead after 41 minutes, and they had a one-man advantage when Fabinho was sent off on the hour for Bahia. Internacional's Indio was sent off for a foul from a corner though, his second bookable offence, and that gave Bahia a penalty in the 79th minute, which Jobson converted.