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Brazil's coach unleashes 'injured' Neymar on Costa Rica

26 June, 2018, 22:15 | Author: Delia Walker
  • GK Alisson

He said: "Not everyone knows what I went through to get here".

And his players clearly respect him, with Coutinho and captain Thiago Silva speaking of how the team is learning to keep going right to the final whistle.

Barcelona playmaker Coutinho gave Tite's in-form side a first-half lead in spectacular fashion in its Group E opener against Switzerland but the European side was able to baton down the hatches and escape with a draw after Steven Zuber's 50th-minute equaliser.

In the FIFA World Cup in Russian Federation on Friday, Switzerland defeated Serbia 2-1, Nigeria outplayed Iceland 2-nil, while Brazil beat Costa Rica by a similar 2-nil margin.

"Brazil sank Costa Rica when it hurt the most".

Philippe Coutinho - the game's outstanding player - pounced on hold-up play from Jesus to break the deadlock in the 91st minute, with Neymar making sure of the points from Douglas Costa's centre.

Neymar scored his first goal of the cup moments later, as Brazil produced at least a small amount of positive vibes in a cup where South America has really struggled.




Ahead of the competition, many argued that the five-time World Cup winners were going to lift the title in mid-July, but their maiden campaign against the Swiss only resulted in a draw.

The five-time winners and the competition's most decorated nation were on course for their second successive draw in Russian Federation, with Neymar denied a second-half penalty upon VAR review and Gabriel Jesus hitting the crossbar. "I told him that (crying) is good".

The tide continued to lap at Costa Rica's door in the second half. He also ignored a Brazilian claim for a penalty after midfielder Paulinho bounced off defender Oscar Duarte contesting a high ball. The Costa Ricans lost their first group match 1-0 to Serbia.

The win puts Switzerland into second place in Group E with four points, the same as Brazil.

Celso Borges spurned arguably the best chance of the first period for Costa Rica when he ran on to Gamboa's cut back but shot wide from eight metres out.

The question now is how he approaches the last group game against Serbia.

"We had the patience to play until the end of the game when we were awarded with two goals", said Coutinho, who has now scored in both Brazil's games.

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