Brazil kicked off their World Cup journey with a hard-fought 2-0 win against a resilient Serbia, writes eurosport.com.
“Coming into the both the match and the tournament as favourites, Brazil failed to really get going in the first half, with it taking over 20 minutes for Brazil to register a shot on target. Serbia, who never lost a game in qualifying, made it clear that they weren’t going to make it easy for Brazil. Dragan Stojkovic’s side stood firm defensively and looked to get forward when they could. Brazil countered on a few occasions but struggled to find the right final ball.
Brazil were much better in the second half however and could have been 1-0 up within 40 seconds, Raphinha’s effort was smartly saved by Milinkovic-Savic at point-blank range.
Tite’s side continued to pour forward with more intent and attacking purpose. On the hour mark, Alex Sandro struck the post from distance with a brilliant effort but it didn’t take long for Brazil to find the breakthrough. Just a couple of minutes later Brazil got their goal. Neymar weaved his way into the box, the ball fell to Vinicius Junior who saw his effort pushed out by Milinkovic-Savic and Richarlison was on hand to tap home. A great goal that required the instinct of a striker.
Serbia responded really well to going 1-0 down, pouring forward but all without creating many clear cut opportunities. Brazil wrapped up all three points ten minutes later when Richarlison scored what was the best goal of the tournament so far, swivelling in the box before smashing a scissor kick into the back of the net to put Brazil in total control.
Fred nearly made it 3-0 to Brazil, smashing the crossbar with a fantastic effort from distance but ultimately the game ended 2-0. A very impressive second half showing from Brazil who get their campaign off to the best possible start”.