By Robbie Blakeley, Senior Contributing Reporter
BRASÍLIA, BRAZIL – The Brazilian national team (Seleção) thrashed Australia 6-0 in a friendly at the Estádio Mané Garrincha in Brasília yesterday afternoon. In the first of seven games that coach Scolari has before the 2014 World Cup, his players put in an exemplary performance to brush aside an Australian team which has guaranteed its place next year in next year’s international soccer event.
Almost 50,000 fans were in the stadium to witness arguably the finest display since Scolari’s return. Neymar went close on three minutes before Jô opened the scoring after eight.
Neymar’s left-sided cross was met by Bernard, whose volley hit the post. Jô was on call to touch home the rebound.
Australia tried to respond but their only spell of pressure came midway through the first half with a succession of corners. Indeed, the only way they looked like they might level was through a set piece as Brazil bossed the midfield; Ramires in particular was excellent throughout.
A mazy run from Neymar almost ended in a second on 23 minutes as the Seleção dominated the opening half hour. On 33 minutes Jô got his and Brazil’s second.
Paulinho intercepted Australian build-up play and passed to Maicon, who in return released Bernard down the right flank. The Shakhtar forward crossed and Jô converted for his brace. Two minutes later came another. Neymar latched onto Ramires’ pinpoint through ball and slipped the ball past Schwarzer to give Brazil a three-goal margin at the break.
The second half carried on in the same vein. Thiago Silva had a goal disallowed five minutes after the restart for an alleged push. Just before the hour mark, Ramires got Brazil’s fourth. Paulinho passed to Maxwell out on the left who crossed for the Chelsea midfielder to head home.
Scolari subsequently made a triple substitution, taking off David Luiz, Bernard and Paulinho for Dante, Lucas and Hernanes. A few minutes later, Alexandre Pato entered for Jô and got Brazil’s fifth, flicking home Neymar’s low cross.
Marcos Rocha replaced Maicon for the final fifteen minutes and seven minutes from time, Luiz Gustavo’s thunderous long-range strike put Brazil 6-0 ahead, the same scoreline by which they beat Australia in the 1997 Confederations Cup.
The Seleção are next in action against Portugal on Wednesday in Boston, U.S. Fans will be hoping for more of the same.
Read more (in Portuguese).
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