Rampant Brazil Extinguish Bolivian Dream
Cebolinha Celebrates Scoring Brazil's Third Goal In A Dominant Victory Over Bolivia
Christian Schäfer previously stated his intent to rectify Brazil's poor finishing in the group stages, and a three goal margin certainly proved their doubters wrong. The Seleção sacrificed their possession game in favour of a full-scale attacking style, and they certainly got their rewards as they cruised to a comfortable victory.
vs Bolivia (02/07/2023)
Marquinhos was rested in favour of Carlinhos for this fixture, while Fabinho continued to play in DM. Neymar and Coutinho played in a front three alongside Wesley Santos, who had a point to prove about his role in the starting line-up, having scored in the last match.
Not even four minutes had passed before the deadlock was broken, and there were no prizes given for predicting the side who scored. Brazil captain Neymar sprayed a pass to his right to wing-back Hulk. The latter then cut inside and squirmed past Marco Ortega before seeing his shot cannon off the crossbar. The ball then fell kindly to Hulk to net the rebound, who gave Brazil a valuable lead with his first ever international goal.
The first half proved to be a feisty one, with the referee brandishing the yellow card no fewer than six times. Despite the high foul count, no red cards were distributed throughout the entire game, with twenty-two players remaining on the pitch until the end.
Bolivia thought they equalised from a set-piece halfway through the first half. Captain Erick Iragua's free-kick was flicked on by Ludwing Zenteno in to the path of Jorge Coimbra who made no mistake in finding the net, but the striker's goal was ruled out for a deserved offside call. A moment of complacency for an otherwise brilliant Brazil side.
Brazil doubled their lead after the half-hour mark and gave themselves a two goal lead going in to half time following some incredible passing on the right-hand side. Fabinho and Hulk combined to set Wesley Santos free on the goal line, and his low cross was turned in to the goal by Bolivia defender Juan Pablo Ovando. A moment of shame for the man in green, but a moment of delight for the Seleção.
Brazil would have one more clear chance in the game, and substitute Cebolinha made his impact on the game by taking it. Hulk's low cross to Neymar rebounded off a number of players inside the box before falling to Cebolinha, who secured an emphatic result with a composed finish. Brazil were on their way towards the semi finals!
Hulk (Brazil) 9.0
Christian Schäfer's Post-Match Interview:
"We stepped up our game for this fixture and the scoreline reflected this. I am proud of my players for holding strong in defence and producing great attacking instinct to score three goals. We are now in the semi finals of the Copa América, and we can begin to dream of bringing the trophy home."
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