Vanderlei Luxemburgo's team, who have 46 points from 25 games, moved within three of Gremio, who went down to a shock 2-1 home loss to mid-table Goias on Saturday.
Champions Sao Paulo also moved within striking distance of the leaders by beating Flamengo 2-0. Dagoberto tapped in from close range after a mix-up in the Flamengo defence just before half-time, and Hugo outjumped two static defenders to head the second on the hour to leave Sao Paulo fifth, four points behind Palmeiras.
Vasco da Gama had two players sent off and striker Leandro Amaral ended up in goal as they lost 3-1 at home to Nautico and dropped into the relegation zone. Vasco's troubles began when defender Jorge Luis was sent off five minutes before half-time with the score at 1-1, for hauling down Nautico striker Felipe.
Ruy tapped in to put Nautico 2-1 ahead in the 81st minute, and Vasco had Roberto sent off for handball two minutes later. With Vasco having made their three permitted substitutions, Amaral, who had earlier scored, took over in goal. Felipe added Nautico's third in stoppage-time.
Pois é, até a FIFA, que não vinha divulgando matérias sobre o brasileirão, este tropeço do Grêmio ganhou espaço. O ibope tá aumento, heim meu tricolor?