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Neymar returns as exceptional Brazil storm into quarter-finals

Neymar is the third Brazilian to score in three or more World Cups after Pele (1958, 1962, 1966, 1970) and Ronaldo (1998, 2002, 2006). PHOTO FIFA.COM

🌟 #FIFAWorldCup
✳ RESULTS
⚽ Japan 1 Croatia 1 (1-3)
⚽ Brazil 4 South Korea 1

Doha, Qatar | FIFA.COM | Brazil conjured a dazzling performance to sweep aside Korea Republic and secure a FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 quarter-final tie with Croatia on Friday.

The good news did not stop there for the rampant South Americans. Neymar defied expectations to return from injury and the inimitable Paris Saint-Germain forward was celebrating after only 13 minutes. Brazil were awarded a penalty after defender Jung Wooyoung was surprised by Richarlison’s sudden emergence on his shoulder and clipped the attacker’s ankle when attempting a clearance.

Neymar stuttered and shimmied in his run-up, completely deceiving Kim Seunggyu, who was static as the ball rolled past him on the left. Brazil were already one goal to the good at this point. Vinicius Jr controlled Raphinha’s right-wing cutback across the box, then with a barely perceptible backlift punched a strike beyond goalkeeper Kim and into the top corner.

Richarlison scored Brazil’s third following a glorious passage of play. The Tottenham Hotspur player initially employed a succession of headers to gain control of the ball, before transferring a pass to Marquinhos. He fired a ball across the perimeter of the box for Thiago Silva, who spied Richarlison continuing his forward run and zipped a wonderful first-time pass for his teammate to comfortably finish for a third goal of the tournament.

It was four goals inside 29 minutes when Lucas Paqueta arrived in the penalty area to meet Vinicius J’s cross from the byline on the full. The ball was past Kim before he could blink.

Kim made good saves from Richarlison and Raphinha, twice, to limit the bleeding, while opposite number Alisson was not entirely unemployed. Far from it. Alisson flew to his left to tip round Hwang Heechan’s rising drive after 17 minutes and used his shoulder to deny Son Heungmin following the restart. Hwang was thwarted, once more, when Alisson flung out his right hand to repel a close-range blast.

Substitute Paik Seungho eventually got the better of Alisson with a howitzer of a strike – but Brazil’s minds were already turning to Friday evening and Croatia at Education City Stadium.

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SOURCE: FIFA.COM

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