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Brazil made it through to the quarter-finals of the World Cup yesterday after beating Chile 3-2 on penalties.
The teams could not be separated after 120 minutes, with the scores at 1-1. Chile,as many had expected, pushed Brazil all the way and in my honest opinion they deserved to go through.
Chile came within inches of knocking the hosts out of the World Cup in the 120th minute when Mauricio Pinilla’s rocket hit the crossbar. That moment showed that the luck was with Brazil yesterday.
I found myself feeling bitterly disappointed that Brazil had won the penalty shoot-out, especially with Chile coming SOOO close to winning the match.
Just like I have been saying all the way through the tournament so far, Brazil were not that impressive yesterday. The team were again dependent on Neymar to carry them through to the next stage of the competition.
Hulk produced the odd moment of quality but apart from that the team looked flat, especially in the second-half. You have to wonder how Brazil would cope if Neymar was to get injured.
If Brazil are to improve, the first thing they need to do is replace Fred up-front. The 30-year-old has been in awful form throughout the tournament so far.
If you hadn’t seen the line-ups before the match you wouldn’t even know that he was on the pitch. He rarely gets involved and his movement is terrible for a striker.
It is no surprise to me that the Brazilian fans are getting on his back. He probably was the only player not to break a sweat yesterday.
I would personally bring Willian into the starting line-up and move Neymar into a more central role. It would be a different role for him but a player of his quality will be able to adapt. Anything would be more effective then having Fred up there by himself.
Along with this change, more members of the team need to step-up their performances. The home crowd deserve more from the likes of Oscar and Dani Alves.
Brazil will face Colombia in the quarter-finals and I think that this will be an even more difficult game for the hosts to win.
Colombia have been the surprise package in the tournament so far and they have been brilliant to watch. One can only imagine how good they would be if Falcao was not injured.
Colombia also have their own Neymar in James Rodríguez, who arguably has been the best player of the World Cup.
Right now I would have to say that Colombia will have the edge going into this match.
Do you agree with me? Let me know below!