|Copa do Brasil|
The Copa do Brasil (Brazil Cup) is a knockout football competition played by 86 teams, representing all 26 Brazilian states plus the Federal District. The Copa do Brasil is an opportunity for teams from smaller states to play against the big teams and episodes of giant-killing have happened at a regular rate throughout the competition's history. It is currently sponsored by Continental AG and is thus currently known as the Copa Continental Pneus do Brasil for sponsorship reasons. It is the Brazilian domestic cup and the Brazilian equivalent of the FA Cup, Taça de Portugal, Copa del Rey, Coupe de France, Coppa Italia, DFB-Pokal, and Copa Argentina, among others.
From 2001 to 2012, the Copa do Brasil was played in the first half of the year and in those seasons, due to the busy schedule in the first half of the year in Brazil, teams playing in the Copa Libertadores de América were not allowed to participate in the Copa do Brasil in the same year.
Since 2013, the tournament has run from March to November. Teams that contest the Copa Libertadores de América join the Copa do Brasil directly in Round of 16. Also, the best 8 teams from the previous year's Campeonato Brasileiro Série A eliminated up to the third round qualify for Copa Sudamericana.
The competition is a single elimination knockout tournament featuring two-legged ties. In the first two rounds, if the away team wins the first match by 2 or more goals, it progresses straight to the next round avoiding the second leg. The away goals rule is used in the Copa do Brasil, which is an unusual feature when compared to other South American competitions. For example, the Copa Libertadores did not adopt this rule until 2005. However, away goals rule is not applied if both teams are from the same city, like happened in 2006 Semi-Final (Fluminense and Vasco) and Final (Flamengo and Vasco) and in 2014 final (Cruzeiro and Atlético Mineiro).
The winner qualifies for the next year's Copa Libertadores de América.