Wednesday, June 16, 2010
The Selecao overcame a well-organized North Korea team to start their World Cup campaign on a winning note. However, it was far from being an easy victory as the North Koreans showed why they are worthy of a place in the greatest show on earth.
Brazil was expected to win by at least four goals but a superb North Korea defence ensured that honours were even at the break. Dunga must have instructed his players to shoot on sight in the second half because that's exactly what they did. That rattled the North Koreans a bit and finally the breakthrough came courtesy of Maicon who caught the Chollimas keeper by surprise to score almost from the touchline.
With the Koreans rattled by Maicon's wonder goal, Brazil began to press forward and was rewarded with a sensational team goal. Robinho was the creator, his perfectly weighted through pass took three North Korean defenders out and invited Elano to sidefoot home impressively. The celebratory jig was also something noteworthy from the two former Manchester City team mates.
"The People's Rooney", Jong Tae-Se was the pick of the North Korean players. He showed that he has ability to cope at the highest level, showing great touch, vision and pace to burn. He is a handful and definitely a lively character at this World Cup.
Elano's goal is easily the best goal of the tournament thus far. Here is the video of Brazil's excellent second goal.
It should be interesting to see how North Korea will fare against Ivory Coast and Portugal. Their speed in attack will be a problem for the powerfully built Kolo Toure and Bruno Alves. Jong Tae-Se looks quite capable of troubling both Ivorian and Portuguese defence which are not nearly as formidable as Lucio and co.
In summary, Brazil played reasonably well. It was incredible watching Lucio playing the ball out of defence like an olden day sweeper. Kaka looked overweight and his touch seemed to be some way off his best. Luis Fabiano was well-contained. Robinho tantalised and excited us all without any end-product.
Dunga's team are still finding their best form in the World Cup but at least they provided us with an enjoyable and entertaining game of football. After all the tense matches we have seen, Brazil and North Korea had managed to serve up a delectable fare for us all.
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