Vasco de Gama hold a one point lead in the Brazilian Campeonato table after a 1-0 win over Botafogo.
But Vasco did not secure all three points until the 87th minute when Alecsandro netted the only goal of the game.
Fluminense, third in the table, lost ground in the title race after losing to Gremio who moved up to fourth thanks to a 1-0 victory. But the home side had to finish the match with 10 men after Kleber, who had scored the only goal of the game after 19 minutes, was dismissed with a minute remaining.
Dagoberto scored after 25 minutes as Internacional won 1-0 away to Figueirense and Corinthians were 2-0 winners at home to Cruzeiro with goals from Chicao and Paulinho.
Leonardo scored twice as Coritiba won 4-3 away to Nautico Recife with the visitors' other goals coming from Michael Robson and Fabio Pereira.
Goalkeeper Luiz Marcio scored a penalty as Atletico Goianiense won 4-3 over Sao Paulo. Marino, Patrick and Wesley also scored for Atletico, with Sao Paulo's goals coming from Ademilson, Jadson and Rafael Toloi.
Andre Luis scored after six minutes for Ponte Preta but the home side had to settle for a 1-1 draw with Sport Recife as Gabriel Marquinhos levelled the game with 22 minutes gone.