Another favorite, Brazil, started the World Cup. Pentacampeones beat Serbia with beautiful football, but there was also a disadvantage – at the end of the match, Neymar was replaced due to injury.
Brazil scored two unanswered goals against Serbia in the last match of the first round and topped Group G. The double was on Richarlison’s account, which was not expected to be a 26-man squad member by the most media sources.
First 90 minutes in Qatar
In the first half, the audience did not witness the goals scored at the Lusail Stadium, although the game could have been more exciting. Vanja Milinkovic-Savic saved three shots. In response to the Seleção’s dominant football, Serbia, filled with players from the top 5 leagues, looked good physically in the first half but spent most of their resources fighting and defending in midfield.
The audience saw Richarlison’s double already in the second half. Tite undoubtedly won the second half to his counterpart. Only in the second half the South Americans created up to 20 scoring chances at the goal of Dragan Stojkovic’s team. The second of the two goals of the Tottenham forward was particularly beautiful when Richarlison turned Vinicius Junior’s pass into an assist and scored the second goal – Joga Bonito!
Then Tite let Antoni, Jesus, Martinelli, and Fred into the field. The attacking trio created more problems for Serbia’s relatively tired backline and midfield, but no more goals were scored.
The most unpleasant thing that happened in the remaining time was Neymar’s injury, the severity of which will be revealed during the day. Nikola Milenkovic was the author of the tackle against the 30-year-old attacker. The Fiorentina defender did the same thing against Mario Mandzukic three years ago. Then, after the accented rudeness in Serie A, Gonzalo Higuain called the Serb crazy (el loco).
After the meeting, Neymar’s ankle was swollen. Still, he could move independently and step on his painful leg, which, in this situation, Seleção fans perceived as a positive signal. After the match, Tite also said – he would continue to play at the World Cup. Danilo also ended the game with pain, although his case is less alarming.
After the match
“Playing and scoring in a World Cup has been a dream I have had since I was a kid. We had a great game, especially in the second half when we took advantage of their tiredness. Now it’s time to think about the second game, it’s time to rest and prepare well because all the games are important.”Richarlison
“I am very happy. It was incredible. I didn’t think it would be so good. We have to keep working. I was only thinking about working hard, and it didn’t seem like a World Cup, just like another game. [Neymar] took a hit but hopefully he is OK. He will do everything to be with us. He is our most important player. We have to keep going game by game to achieve big things.”Vinicius Junior
Key facts of the game:
- In his last 7 games of national team Richarlison has scored 9 goals.
- Richarlison is the first Brazilian footballer who scored the brace after 2014.
- After the debut of Richarlison in Brazil national team, he has scored the most goals – 19.
Brazil will play its next match against Switzerland on November 28.