The Brazilians worked their magic to come up trumps against South Korea in their Round of 16 fixture. The stage was all set and the return of Neymar added more venom to an already potent attack.
Brazil brushed past Son Heung-Min and Co after running riot in the game. The Selecao already bagged four goals in the first half putting on a dazzling display but their gesture after the game is something that would have put a smile on all of our faces.
They held a banner of the legendary Pele who is currently in the hospital and undergoing treatment. The 82-year-old watched his nation’s World Cup match from the hospital and would not have been disappointed at the way they set up.
Vinicius Jr opened the scoring in the seventh minute and Neymar Jr quickly doubled the lead in the 13th minute via a penalty. With this goal, the PSG forward became the third Brazilian player to score in three editions of the FIFA World Cup. The same feat has only been achieved by Pele and Ronaldo before him.
It also means that the 30-year-old is now only one goal away from equalling the record goal-scoring tally of Pele. Neymar burst onto the scene as a youngster with Santos, mesmerizing viewers with silky feet and delightful tricks.
He made his way to one of the biggest clubs in Barcelona and struck up a feared partnership with Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi at the time. Despite his long list of achievements, Neymar’s career hasn’t been without his fair share of downs.
The former Barca player was in scintillating form in the 2014 World Cup but an injury in the quarterfinal meant that he couldn’t take to the field for Brazil against Germany in the semi-finals of that edition. The Germans went on to run riot defeating the selecao 7-1. Neymar claimed that this back injury was one of the worst moments in his life.
“I see it as my last because I don’t know if I have the strength of mind to deal with football any more.”
It can be difficult to see under the struggles and obstacles that are hidden under the glitz and glamour of a professional athlete. Their tribute to Pele post the match was a touching tribute to a legend who changed the game, but can Neymar get his hand on that illustrious trophy before hanging up his boots?
The Brazilians take on Croatia in their quarter-final fixture on 9th December at the Education City Stadium.
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