Fred’s last gasp goal saved Brazil from a quick exit from the Copa America. Ganso’s flick found the veteran striker who took it one bounce and laid it past Justo Villar. After that the team celebrated as if they had won the World Cup. The way they’re playing such celebrations might be in order.
The big names Dani Alves, Pato, and Neymar were just terrible. Alves in particular got taken to the cleaners by Marcelo Estigarribia for both of Paraguay’s goals. Neymar went in for ball hogging glory and Pato did not show up.
Brazil’s first goal was the result of Ramires industry- the Chelsea winger striding through midfield, falling after getting tackled, recovering the ball and passing to Ganso all in one continuous sequence. Ganso found Jadson cutting in from the right. The Shakhtar Donetsk striker angled a scorching grounder past Villar to give Brazil the lead.
Paraguay answered back in the second half after Estigarribia blowing past Alves found Santa Cruz with his cross which the Blackburn striker clinically converted. It was his 25th international goal which makes him Paraguay’s joint top scorer along with José Saturnino Cardozo. There was a comic interlude on the sidelines as Gerardo Martino brusquely waved off Haedo Nelson Valdes’s celebratory overture.
Valdes was the focal point of Paraguay’s second goal as the indefatigable Estigarribia bundled Alves off the ball and laid the ball across goal to find Valdes whose attempt led to an inadvertent ping pong of rebounds with the ball finally lodged at the back of the net.
Just when the Albirroja looked like they were going to pull off a memorable win came Fred’s equalizer. In Group B the Venezuelans occupy the top spot with Paraguay and Brazil tied for second. Ecuador brings up the rear.