Brazil’s debut at the 2015 Copa America last night was close towards being another disappointment for its fans, but Barcelona star Neymar scored a goal and offered a great assist in injury time to lift his side over the Peruvian national team in a 2-1 victory in Temuco.
The match – which was Brazil’s first serious international match since the 7-1 and 3-0 thumpings it received at the hands of Germany and Netherlands in the last two games it played at the World Cup it hosted last year – echoed the defensive nightmare Brazil had in the World Cup semifinal against Germany early on, as a string of continuous mistakes made by center backs David Luiz and Miranda ended with keeper Jefferson serving Peruvian winger Christian Cueva with an easy ball for a goal in the 2nd minute.
But this time, Brazilian star Neymar – who also captained his team – would have none of it and set the pace for a quality performance after he equalized with a header just three minutes later. The goal made him the first player in history to score in the Copa America and in a UEFA Champions League Final in the same year (Neymar scored the third goal of Barcelona’s 3-1 win over Italian champions Juventus in the final one week ago).
The rest of the match set into a comfortable pace in which the Brazilian team led by the flamboyant winger/second striker dominated, with Neymar himself making fools of Peruvian defenders at every opportunity; however, they failed to take their chances and the game was steadily heading towards a 1-1 draw.
A spark of excellency from Neymar was what decided it again in the end, as he almost miraculously found a pass which split the entire Peruvian defence and left Shakhtar Donetsk striker Douglas Costa to put it past goalkeeper Pedro Gallese for the win.
In the group’s other match, star-laden Colombia were left stunned with a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Venezuela, with the game’s only goal being scored by Zenit Sankt Petersburg striker Salomon Rondon. This makes Colombia’s next match at the tournament against Brazil, scheduled to take part Wednesday in Santiago de Chile, crucial for their hopes to advance out of the group stage. Tommorow’s matches start the second round of the group stage, with Group A matches between Ecuador and Bolivia, respectively host nation Chile and Mexico.
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