The Brazilian Serie A is gearing up for one of the all-time great finishes, with no more than four points separating six teams at the top of the table.
After 35 games, Palmeiras (1st) and Flamengo (2nd) lead the way on 62 points, with goal difference separating the two, with Botafogo (61 points) in third, Atlético Mineiro (60 points) in fourth.
Recent Performances – Form and Momentum
Of all the teams in the run-in for the title, it’s Atlético Mineiro who boast the best form, with 14 points from a possible 18 in their previous six matches at the time of writing. They also have the best defensive record in the league, having conceded just 27 with 35 games gone.
But in terms of eye-catching performances, it is hard to look past second-placed Flamengo, who hammered title-rivals and current table-toppers Palmeiras 3-0 at the Maracanã. They can also count some other important wins on their recent result list, including a 1-0 win over Bragantino and a comfortable 3-0 victory over bottom-placed America MG. Can they be the Brasileiro 2023 winner?
While momentum appears to be with Atlético Mineiro and Flamengo, it is difficult to definitively rule out any of the others. Current leaders Palmeiras are defending their crown and know how to get the job done, having won the title a record 11 times.
Botafogo will be looking to replicate some of the form they showed in the early part of the year, though their supporters will be feeling sour at how their side threw away a 13-point lead at top of the Brasileiro Serie A table halfway stage of the season.
Key Contenders – Teams in the Mix
Let’s take a deeper look at the four clubs fighting it out for glory atop the Brasileiro Serie A standing and how the Brasilerio 2023 next matches could come into play.
Serial winners, historically, Palmeiras have the bit between their teeth at the top of the table now and it would take a brave person to back against them for the Brasileiro championship 2023. They have bagged 58 goals at the time of writing, more than any other team in the league, and have the second-highest expected goal (xG) ranking of 1.45 per 90 minutes.
Ex-Brazil boss Tite became the third Flamengo manager of the season back in October, and the club has risen from the waters of their disappointing campaign. Their fortunes have turned around dramatically under the hire of the former national team manager, who won six of his opening nine games in charge. Only goal difference keeps them from topping the table, and the club will be buoyed by their emphatic 3-0 triumph over their closest rivals recently.
Their ruthlessness in front of goal is helping – despite averaging just 12.6 shots per game (the sixth-lowest in the division), 35.3% of those shots end up on target, which is the third highest in this metric.
They are in with a strong chance.
It was all going so well for a team searching for their first league title since 1995 – 13 points clear midway through the season led most to assume this was to be their year. Perhaps it was unlucky 13 for the famously superstitious club – since the departure of ex-boss Luis Castro to Saudi Arabia, they have been in free fall, and let 3-0 and 3-1 leads slip against Palmeiras and Gremio recently.
They need a huge change of momentum, and fast, but they may have already let the trophy slip from their fingers.
The 2021 champions are also coached by an ex-Brazil coach – Luiz Felipe Scolari. They have the best defensive record in the division and can count on the goals of Paulinho to get the job done at the other end – he is currently the highest scorer in the division.
Their game against Flamengo on Wednesday night could decide their fate in this title race.
Brasileiro Matches Ahead – Upcoming Fixtures
It could all come down to the final day – and there are some juicy ties to sink your teeth into, with the four leading contenders each facing tricky away ties.
Final Day Fixtures:
- Cruzeiro vs Palmeiras
- Sao Paulo vs Flamengo
- Internacional vs Botafogo
- Bahia vs Atlético Mineiro
In theory, Atlético Mineiro have the easiest task, though Bahia are fighting for their lives in a relegation scrap. Flamengo could have the trickiest task, with mid-table Sao Paulo having a good recent run of form, climbing the Brasileiro standing 2023.
Player Spotlight – Key Figures in the Race
A national team legend and scorer of what is likely to be goal of the season with a ferocious 45-yard free-kick against Sao Paulo, Hulk has been performing to an elite level all season long. Only Gremio’s Luis Suárez has more goals and assists (24) than Hulk (23), and he will have an important part to play in the run-in.
Also, Look out for ex-Porto forward Tiquinho Soares – the Botafogo frontman has 20 goals and assists so far this campaign and his team will hope he can inspire them to a famous title win.
Brasileiro Predictions – Title Scenarios
Of all the Brasileiro matches in the run-in, the key game is Flamengo vs Atlético Mineiro on Wednesday 29th November – if the hosts win, they are likely in a head-to-head battle with Palmeiras for the title with two games left. If the latter wins, the race is blown wide open, with Flamengo, Botafogo, and Atlético Mineiro likely to be within three points of the leaders Palmeiras with two games to go.
Of the four teams, Palmeiras (+26) and Botafogo (+23) are best placed in the goal difference column, with tlético Mineiro (+19) and Flamengo (+17) further behind – a heavy win for any of the four teams could be the difference between glory and pain come the end of the campaign
Enjoy the Thrill – Brasileiro Title Race
The Brasileiro Serie A 2023 title race is one of the most thrilling of recent times. With no fewer than six teams still in with a chance, football fans around the world can expect an exhilarating run-in.
But it’s not just about winning or losing. It’s also about the passion, the camaraderie, and the love for Brazilian football. The atmosphere in stadiums across Brazil is electric, and it’s a great opportunity to experience the unrivalled football fever that Brazil can conjure.
Whatever the result of Brasileiro 2023, it should be a special few weeks.