Hulk’s Atletico Mineiro ends 50 years of waiting for the Brasileirao title

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Atletico Mineiro had plenty to celebrate after the Brazilian team won their first Brasileirao title in 50 years.

Not since 1971 had Atletico – the oldest active club in Minas Gerais – conquered the country’s leading club competition.

But Atletico ended their half-century wait with two games left thanks to Thursday’s captivating 3-2 victory over Bahia.

Atletico were trailing 2-0 on the road, but Hulk’s penalty kick in the 73rd minute and a three-minute Keno match ensured the club could not be caught by Flamengo.

This is Atletico’s second Brasileirao trophy – the longest interval between two titles on the same team in the tournament since 1959.

“It’s been 50 years since we won the title, it’s a long time,” said two-goal hero Keno, with Atletico reportedly promising free tattoos to fans as part of their festivities. “Now we must celebrate.”

“It’s been a magical year and we still have a title to play for against Athletico Paranaense,” Atletico head coach Cuca said.

“I can only imagine what the fans went through when we were down 2-0, they shouted and cursed enough of us. But now, what a result, what happiness. “

Hulk has played a key role since returning to his native Brazil via Atletico – who also boasts former Atletico Madrid and Chelsea striker Diego Costa – in January.

The 35-year-old took his number to 18 Brasileirao goals while he has been involved in 25 goals, including seven assists.

Ronaldinho, who spent two years at Atletico Mineiro between 2012 and 2014, congratulated the club via Instagram.

The Brazilian legend wrote: “Congratulations @atletico with the beautiful campaign built in Brasileirao !!! I am so happy to see the story you are building …”

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