Published: Tue, June 26, 2018
Sport | By Ruben Hill

Neymar sheds 'tears of joy' after defeating Costa Rica

Neymar sheds 'tears of joy' after defeating Costa Rica

Switzerland's equaliser was only the sixth goal Brazil conceded in 22 games under Tite, while Neymar struggled to perform at his best.

"I was saddened by his behaviour", Silva said.

Neymar's endured a hard week and it was clearly too much for him after the final whistle.

This was just his fourth appearance since breaking a bone in his foot against Marseille in February and only the second time he has completed the full 90 minutes.

"We knew Brazil's strengths and we wanted to minimise them and we managed to do so for almost 91 minutes", he added.

Brazil has four points in Group E and plays Serbia in its final match in Moscow on Wednesday.

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.

For long periods Costa Rica's flat-back five kept Neymar on the periphery, with Johan Venegas and Cristian Gamboa both man-marking him out of the game as Brazil found it hard to carve out chances in the first half.

Coach Tite's team were heading for a second inglorious draw when Barcelona midfielder Coutinho popped up to poke home from Roberto Firmino's nod down.

They have bought themselves, and Neymar, precious time.

The Costa Rica coach rejected the criticism that he had been too cautious with his tactics. We don't need any help, the players don't need help, I don't want help.

Brazil attacked relentlessly in the second half and was awarded a penalty in the 78th minute when Neymar was impeded as he cut inside defender Giancarlo Gonzalez.

In the end though, Neymar finally delivered and the goal should take some weight off his shoulders.

As early as in the third minute of the match, Brazil missed two chances when forward Bryan Ruiz lost the ball on the edge of the box and Philippe Coutinho's shot went over the goal post.

Shaqiri's runs down the wings were a constant threat to Serbia's defense, and the Swiss midfield recovered after a shaky start to dominate the same way it did against Brazil in its tournament opener.

Costa Rica's only previous World Cup victory against South American opposition came in the 2014 tournament (3-1 vs Uruguay).

Like this: