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Athletico edge closer to guaranteed Libertadores spot

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By Reuters

CURITIBA (Reuters) – Athletico Paranaense beat Gremio 2-0 at home in Brazil’s Serie A on Wednesday to boost their chances of winning a spot in next year’s Copa Libertadores.

The team from Curitiba scored a goal in each half, the first by Marcio Azevedo and the second by Maycon Nikao from the penalty spot, to take all three points from a Gremio side that had Diego Tardelli sent off midway through the second half.

The result takes Athletico to 59 points and level with Gremio, who are a place above them in fourth on goal difference.

The top six qualify for the Libertadores, the South American equivalent of the Champions League.

(Reporting by Andrew Downie; Editing by Christian Schmollinger)