The first 45 minutes were loaded of action from both teams. Even being eliminated and full of lineup changes, Cameroon came to play and gave Brazil a hard time for a while, with dangerous crosses and shots from outside the box. The Indomitable Lions were also a little violent, commiting hard fouls and trying to break Brazil's balance. Neymar, especially, was the target of Cameroon's tackles. Not just tackles, but unnecessary cheap shots after the play ended just to make Neymar angry.
And they got Neymar angry. Not a good idea, though. Just a couple of minutes after being shoved, he put Brazil ahead. Luis Gustavo (player of the match BY FAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAR) pulled off a beautiful cross that came right into Neymar's right foot. Boom. 1-0.
A little bit later, Cameroon scared Brazil. Taking advantage of the Dani Alves 'Alvenue', Nyom crossed from the left, no Brazilian defender got to the ball, and Matip scored the equalizer.
The drama didn't last long, though. Eight minutes later, Neymar scored his second goal of the match, in good old Neymar fashion, facing the defender, doing a quick cut to the right foot and striking from close range. 2-1 and Brazil regained full control of the match.
Big Phil Scolari decided to make a change in Brazil during halftime. Paulinho, who had a terrible performance in the first 45 minutes, came off for Fernandinho. And the Manchester City's midfielder took over and probably solidified himself as the starter for the rest of the tournament. He gave Brazil something they didn't have in neither of their first two games: midfield control. The Seleção finally had somebody to run the show, move the ball from side to side and orchestrate the offense. The Brazuca got stuck in the CBs feet too much in the first half, but Fernandinho changed that and created huge opportunities for himself and others.
With more ball possession and better pass accuracy, Brazil dominated the rest of the game, and quickly scored the third goal. Fred, the invisible Brazilian center-forward, finally appeared to complete a cross from Marcelo and make the score 3-1 for the Seleção.
Cameroon spent too much energy defending, and had no gas to do any harm on the offensive end. Brazil continued to control the game and tried to score another goal. And they did it, when Fernandinho saw himself alone at the box to score the fourth.
In the end, a dominant, important victory to guarantee the first place in Group A for the hosts. Brazil will now face Chile at the Round of 16, next Saturday. We will see Neymar vs Alexis, and this should be fun.
Interesting Neymar Facts:
- With the two goals scored against Cameroon, Neymar is the scoring leader of the World Cup so far, with four total. He is also the first Brazilian to score four-plus goals in a single World Cup since Ronaldo did it in 2002 (eight).
- Neymar surpassed former Barça legends Rivaldo and Ronaldinho and became the sixth best scorer in Brazil international history, with 35 goals in 52 games.
- Neymar became the second youngest Brazilian ever to reach 35 goals. First on the list? The best player ever, Pelé, who scored 38 at age 22.
Brazil: Júlio César; Dani Alves, Thiago Silva, David Luiz, Marcelo; Luis Gustavo, Paulinho (Fernandinho), Hulk (Ramires), Oscar, Neymar (Willian); Fred.
Goals: Neymar (17', 34'), Fred (49'), Fernandinho (84')
Cameroon: Itandje; Nyom, N'Koulou, Matip, Bedimo; Mbia, Moukandjo (Salli), Enoh, N'Guemó, Choupo-Moting (Makoun), Aboubakar (Webó)
Goals: Matip (26')
- Report: Jeremy Mathieu meets with Valencia, asks for FC Barcelona Transfer
- FIFA World Cup: 23 June 2014: Live Thread
- FC Barcelona News: 23 June 2014; Barça Juvenil A Lose in Spanish Youth Cup Semi-Final, Cordoba Earn Promotion
- Report: Luis Suárez leaving Liverpool; FC Barcelona possible destination
- FIFA World Cup: 22 June 2014: Live Thread