Brazil Send Costa Rica out of world cup

Fixtures and Results: soccer world cup 2018

Brazil were unconvincing in the first half but came to life in the second although they needed injury time goals from Philippe Coutinho and Neymar to see off Costa Rica in Group E.




The opening 10 minutes produced little goal-mouth action with the Costa Ricans defending in numbers and producing plenty of aggressive tackling to ruffle Brazilians feathers.

In the 13th minute, Los Ticos nearly snatched a shock lead on the break as Cristian Gamboa sprinted forward down the right-hand side, and pulled the ball back to a wide-open Celso Borges in space.

However, with the goal gaping, the 30-year-old Deportivo de La Coruna midfielder failed to pick his spot and the strike dribbled wide of the post with Alisson looking relieved in goal.

The Central American outfit were continuing to employ a robust approach as Neymar was brought down late on a couple of occasions, which seemed to rattle the Paris Saint-Germain superstar.

Selecao were struggling to break down the defence or create chances although they had the ball in the back of the net in the 26th minute, though it was ruled out for offside.

After Neymar's jinking run, the ball dropped to Coutinho and he shot towards the target. Yet, the ball fell to Gabriel Jesus who gathered and struck home but it was rightly ruled out as he was a yard behind the last defender.

Just before the break, Marcelo broke forward in characteristic fashion from left-back and struck a shot from 25-yards which was saved with ease by Keylor Navas.

After the interval, the South Americans came out with a greater sense or purpose and came close to the opening goal. In the 48th minute Navas raced out to clear but his clearance went straight to Paulinho.

He got his head up and chipped it over the Real Madrid shot-stopper towards Neymar at the far post. With the goal at his mercy, the forward got it caught under his feet and Navas flew back to smother.

In the 50th minute Coutinho blasted one wide of the target before Jesus hit the crossbar with a header soon after from a cross from the left. As such, it appeared just a matter of time before the first goal would arrive for the Brazilians.

In the 57th minute Douglas Costa burst down the right and he pulled back a cross towards Neymar, though the winger's first-time shot was tipped over the bar superbly by Navas.

After another sweeping move a minute later, the ball was fed to Coutinho from around 18-yards out though he fired straight at the keeper.

Costa Rica were defending in numbers and were relying on occasional counter-attacks, though they never really seemed threatening. In the 72nd minute Neymar danced in from the wing and found space, but his strike whistled inches wide of the top corner.

Brazil were awarded a penalty in the 78th minute when Oscar Duarte was judged to have pushed the same player, though it was overturned after a review by VAR.

Nonetheless, the pressure finally paid dividends in injury time as Marcelo swung in a cross from the left, which Roberto Firmino headed back towards Jesus. The player's first touch dropped to the onrushing Coutinho, who toe-poked home between the legs of Navas.

With virtually the last kick of the game, Costa set up a sitter for Neymar to tap home and get his first goal of the tournament.



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