11 games left to go in the Brazil league and the likes of Cruzeiro and Internacional are engulfed in a relegation battle, writes Tim Vickery.
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Cruzeiro have not renewed the contracts of former Brazil international forwards Leandro Damiao and Julio Baptista, the club announced on Wednesday.
A competition meant to be the precursor to a Brazilian Premier League was officially formed after a meeting by member clubs on Thursday.
Former Real Madrid manager Vanderlei Luxemburgo has been sacked for the second time this season after Cruzeiro confirmed his dismissal on Monday.
Cruzeiro have fired Marcelo Oliveira, the coach who led the team to the Brazilian league titles for the last two seasons.
Argentinian giants River Plate crushed Cruzeiro 3-0 in Brazil to storm into the semifinals of the Copa Libertadores.
Cruzeiro landed a superb result, but there's no hiding from the fact they have failed to live up to expectations so far in the competition.
President Dilma Rousseff signed a measure on Thursday that gives Brazilian clubs up to 20 years to pay what they owe to the federal government. In exchange, they must manage their finances more professionally.
"We had offers and conversations with Manchester United, Monaco and Milan, but none of those offers could meet the expectations of my club Cruzeiro."
"It was best for all concerned and at this stage all I wanted was to play for Real Madrid," he told Marca.
Brazilian midfielder Lucas Silva has completed his move to Real Madrid, the European champions announced on Friday.
Real Madrid have reopened talks with Cruzeiro over the signing of Lucas Silva, according to the midfielder's father.
"I am still a Cruzeiro player," Lucas Silva said. "There is a lot of speculation with my name and Madrid in recent days, but in January I am due to go back to my club."
Gunners have matched asking price for Brazilian midfielder targeted by Real Madrid, according to Marca.
Silva, 21, has been linked with a move from Cruzeiro to Madrid next summer and the midfielder says playing with Ballon d'Or winner would "be a dream."
Silva, 21, has been heavily linked with Bernabeu move recently, and teammates Mayke, Borges and Everton Ribeiro say transfer is just a matter of time.
"There is no final offer," Cruzeiro president Gilvan de Pinho Tavares said. "We are waiting for an official offer. We have already set the market price. For less than 15 million euros, Cruzeiro will not start to talk."
Brazil striker Diego Tardelli netted the winner with a header in first-half injury time at the Mineirao Stadium in Belo Horizonte to claim victory in the first major final contested between the two neighbouring clubs.
As well as sensible recruitment, a number of intangible factors have given Cruzeiro an edge over the opposition. One of these is continuity. ...
Striker Luan and Argentine forward Jesus Datolo each scored a goal to help Atletico Mineiro defeat rivals Cruzeiro 2-0 in the first leg of the Brazilian Cup final on Wednesday.
While all the money and Brazilian media attention focus on Rio and Sao Paulo, the two biggest clubs in Belo Horizonte -- Atletico Mineiro and Cruzeiro -- are putting the region back on the map, writes James Young.
The 21-year-old was also linked with Manchester United in the summer.
It's easy to see why Manchester United, Barcelona and Atletico Madrid are all tracking this guy...
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