The Rio de Janeiro giants meet in a game that will have a huge effect on whether this year's championship comes to the city or heads to Sao Paulo with Corinthians
Mariano, Leandro Euzebio, Elivelton, Carlinhos
Rafael Sobis, Fred
VASCO DA GAMA
Fagner, Dede, Renato Silva, Jumar
Elton, Diego Souza
The Classico dos Gigantes will take place at the Engenhao in Rio de Janeiro as Fluminense's home, the Maracana, is still undergoing work for the World Cup in 2014. If Vasco fail to match a Corinthians win elsewhere, then the title will be destined for Sao Paulo.
Abel Braga has been fortunate enough to be able to consistently select the majority of his first 11 in recent weeks. Flu's main injury worry comes in the holding midfield position as Edinho missed two training sessions earlier in the week. He has since returned, but if he is rendered unfit then Erwin Valencia will step in. Club captain Fred has hit a purple patch, scoring 12 goals in his last six appearances.
After selecting a greater number of first-team players for the Copa Sudamericana tie with Universidad de Chile in midweek, Vasco have several doubts. The veterans of the side, Felipe and Juninho, are struggling with fatigue, with the former leaving the field early in said game.
Diego Souza is available after being suspended for the Copa Sudamericana tie and is likely to start in attack in the absence of Eder Luis, who has a broken metatarsal. Elton faces a late fitness test after suffering a light ankle sprain in the previous game.
|DID YOU KNOW|
- The two sides last came up against each other in Round 18 of the Brasileiro. Rafael Moura scored a second-half equaliser for Fluminense in a 1-1 draw.
- Of the 20 goals scored by Fred, only three came in the first half of the season. The other 17 goals have come since Round 20.
- The hosts need to win in order to have any chance of lifting the title this season. No other result will do, though 2012 Copa Libertadores qualification is secured.
- Fluminense have been involved in four previous Rio de Janeiro derbies this year and have yet to win a single one, drawing one and losing three.
- Depending on Corinthians' result against Copa Libertadores hopefuls Figueirense, Vasco da Gama could go top with a win.
- The visitors could be without Elton, their leading scorer with 11 goals. Diego Souza, with 10 to his name, returns, but the next top-scorer is centre-back Dede with six.
- Vasco's form has dropped in recent weeks, seeing them win only four of their last 10 Brasileiro fixtures.
- The visitors have taken five points from a possible 12 in their previous derby-day fixtures this year. They could add another six points with victories over Fluminense and Flamengo in their final two games.
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