By Jay Forte, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – The Seleção, Brazil’s national football (soccer) team beat Colombia by 2-1 last night on Tuesday, September 6th, with home field advantage at the Arena da Amazônia in the northern state of Manus. The victory puts Brazil in second place in the South American Football Confederation (CONMEBOL) qualifiers of the World Cup 2018.
Brazil now has fifteen points, only one less than Uruguay, who beat Paraguay by 4-0 also last night. Argentina, which was in the lead, tied with Venezuela and fell to third place with fifteen points as well.
With the support of a reported 36,609 fans filling the arena, Brazil took to the field and scored in the first minute of play. Neymar took a corner kick from the left, and Miranda anticipated perfectly to find the net with a header.
At the end of the first half, at 35 minutes, Colombia came back to equalize. James Rodriguez floated in a free kick and Brazilian defender Marquinhos headed the ball into his own net.
In the second half, with the score tied, Brazil remained in control for the initial 45 minutes with 61 percent of possession. Then Neymar took a pass just inside the box with 73 minutes past and drilled the ball into the far corner to ensure victory for Brazil by 2-1.
After the game, coach Tite said the performance of the team was higher than he expected. “It’s a weight and a very large responsibility. I can say with confidence that was above what I expected, and I’m happy because the performance was above what I expected,” he said.
Among the ten teams contesting the South American qualifiers for the World Cup 2018, only Brazil had one hundred percent success in the double round (Matchday 7 and 8): beating Ecuador by 3-0 and Colombia 2-1.
The Seleção returns to the field for CONMEBOL competition on October 7th, facing Bolivia at the Arena das Dunas in Natal (RN).