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Tuesday, May 30, 2023

World Cup 2022–Brazil vs South Korea

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Neymar Jr. returned from injury and helped Brazil beat South Korea 4-1 to set up a World Cup quarter-final match against Croatia. His four unanswered goals for Brazil in the first half at the 974 Stadium on Monday sent a commanding signal to a team that is eyeing its Cup title for the sixth time. The game calmed down in the second half but was never sluggish or uneven, and a spirited South Korean player struggled and scored a consolation goal in the 76th minute.

If this game was played in an educational city, it would be called a soccer lesson. It wasn’t a match against a decidedly weaker opponent, it was a statement to the world. It took only seven minutes for Brazil to hit the bullseye, with Rafael Rafinha receiving the ball just outside the box, charging to the right, and passing it to Neymar. The Paris Saint-Germain number 10 was knocked down by a marker and the ball landed in a large space at the feet of Vinicius Jr.

The Real Madrid star calmed down before scoring a goal for South Korea to the right of Kim Seung-gyu. Just three minutes later, Jung Woo-young beat Richarlison in the box and the referee pointed to the spot. Neymar, who reportedly flew a barber to Qatar to dye his hair blonde after his win over South Korea with a bleached bong, wasted no time netting it in the lower right corner. No. Brazil leads 2-0 with 10 minutes remaining. Korea had quite a few chances, but they excelled in all areas of the field. Brazil will face Croatia in the quarterfinals at Education City on Friday.

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