We’re delighted to present another outstanding map from Bill Turianski of Bill’s Sports Maps fame. Unlike most footballing powers, Brazil has a relatively recent and weak national competition, the Campeonato Brasileiro, only in existence since 1971. The Campeonato consists of twenty teams and play runs from May 3 to December 6 this year.
Eclipsing the Campeonato, the traditional focus in Brazil has been on the multiple regional state tournaments that have dominated the landscape and take up the rest of the year. However, power and attention has shifted towards the national tournament in recent years, with it now taking up a larger portion of the calendar year than ever before (an interesting article in this month’s World Soccer by Tim Vickery argues that it’s time to lay the state tournaments to rest entirely).
According to Alex Bellos’ excellent story of Brazilian football, Futebol, Brazil has 531 professional teams divided into 27 professional state leagues. Bill’s map handily outlines the handful of different states currently represented in the Campeonato.
What’s noticeable is the dominance of Sao Paulo (six clubs) — incidentally, no team outside the Sao Paolo state tournament has won the national championship since 2003. Overall, Sao Paulo clubs have won 17 national titles, with Rio closest with 10.
Click on the map to see all the details on Brazil’s Campeonato for 2009.