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Oct 21, 2012

Atletico scores late to floor Fluminense

Ronaldinho set up the winning goal in second-half injury time as Atletico Mineiro pulled off a dramatic 3-2 victory over Fluminense on Sunday, helping his team move to within six points of its opponent at the top of the Brazilian league with six rounds left.

Atletico relinquished a late lead at Independencia Stadium in Belo Horizonte, but defender Leonardo Silva scored the winner with a header off a well-placed cross by Ronaldinho in the second minute of stoppage time.

Ronaldinho was involved in all three goals by Atletico and found the net from a free kick, but it was disallowed because of a contentious foul call away from the play.

Atletico Mineiro is trying to win its first league title since 1971, while Fluminense won it for the third time in 2010.

"We are still alive," Silva said. "We didn't deserve to leave the field without a victory today. We played well from the beginning."

Wellington Nem put Fluminense in front after 56 minutes, but Jo equalized 13 minutes later as the game belatedly sparked into life.

Jo scored his second on 82 minutes only for Fred to make it 2-2 just three minutes later, but there was still time for Silva to snatch a last-minute winner.

With time running out, Ronaldinho took possession of the ball about 40 meters away from the goal and sent a high cross toward the charging Silva, who headed the ball into the top corner to give Atletico victory in front of more than 20,000 fans.

"Atletico Mineiro deserved the victory today," Fluminense coach Abel Braga said.

Goals were harder to come by elsewhere, with three 1-0 wins and one goalless draw in the day's other four games.

Sport Recife won 1-0 at last-place side Atletico Goianiense thanks to a 49th-minute strike from Gabriel Marquinhos, while Flamengo beat Sao Paulo by the same scoreline courtesy of a 72nd-minute goal from Marcos Gonzalez.

Ponte Preta beat Santos 1-0 after Gedeao de Paiva's early goal, while the game between Nautico Recife and Portuguesa finished goalless.

Information from Press Association and The Associated Press was used in this report.

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