Brazil take on Costa Rica in must win clash

Arnold Nichols
June 26, 2018

The Brazilian star scored his first goal at this summer's World Cup in his second game for 'La Canarinha' in a 2-0 win against Costa Rica.

Brazil's 2-0 win over Costa Rica was nowhere near as comfortable as the scoreline might suggest.

"The responsibility is huge when you are playing for the national team", Coutinho said.

And with Neymar's injury situation filling column inches in the lead-up to the game, Ramirez said that his team won't be looking to test the player's right ankle.

"Not everybody knows what I went through to get here".

"His joy of being back on the pitch is contagious".

A few minutes before the end, Neymar flopped backward to initially draw a penalty on Costa Rica, but the contact was so exaggerated the referee reversed the call after using video review.

He was then handed a yellow card for angrily punching the ball, his frustration obvious to all watching.

But Tite confirmed he will put his faith in the same XI that started against Switzerland in Saint Petersburg as Brazil look to kickstart their quest for a sixth World Cup. "We each show it in our own way".

The first was beautifully placed by Philippe Coutinho and the second by Neymar Jr. "It's just a pity they scored in injury time".

His first touch took the ball away from the defender and Coutinho raced in to poke it through the legs of Keylor Navas from six metres out and claim his second goal of the tournament.

The clock had ticked past 90 minutes when Marcelo crossed from the left and substitute Roberto Firmino headed the ball back across goal to Gabriel Jesus. "I was going to celebrate with them but I had to limp back!"

"I think you have to let it out, a great weight was lifted off our shoulders", Thiago Silva said, in quotes reported by Globo's website. "It became very hard for us".

After recovering from surgery, Neymar played in two World Cup warm-up matches and scored in both to take his worldwide tally to 55 goals.

Serbia are in third place with three points with only two teams qualifying for the knockout stage. If Nigeria wins, it will advance to the round of 16.

Beside Uruguay, no other South American team had won a match until Brazil did so on Friday. Argentina and Iceland have one point apiece.

Musa, Nigeria's all-time leading World Cup scorer with four goals, gave his country the lead in the 49th minute after Victor Moses sprinted deep into the Iceland half and curled a cross to the near post. That ruled him out of Brazil's semifinal match against Germany, a game that ended in a humiliating 7-1 loss.

Kolarov, whose stunning free-kick saw off Costa Rica, stressed Serbia will maintain its intensity when the Balkan nation faces Switzerland in Kaliningrad on Friday.

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