- Philippe Coutinho and Neymar strike in stoppage time to snatch win
- Defeat sees Costa Rica eliminated from Russia 2018
- Brazil go top in Group E ahead of Serbia-Switzerland clash
Brazil broke Costa Rican hearts as they snatched a last-minute 2-0 win in Saint Petersburg. While late goals from Philippe Coutinho and Neymar kick-start their 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™, back-to-back defeats have ended the Central Americans’ hopes of progression.
A Seleção controlled the game from start to finish, averaging two-thirds of possession while largely camped in the Costa Rican half. Chances were slim in the opening period, with the best falling to Los Ticos’ Celso Borges as they threatened on the counter-attack.
Brazil got their eye in after the break, though, finally fashioning the clear-cut opportunities they had been threatening. While Gabriel Jesus rattled the bar, it took until the start of stoppage time for Coutinho to pounce on a loose ball before Neymar side-footed home with virtually the final kick of the game.
Team reporter analysis
Tite was creative with his substitutions and with them the team gained speed and offensive presence compared to the opening period, putting Costa Rica under heavy pressure. Brazil gave a terrific performance in the second half and were persistent enough to keep chasing the goal, finally being rewarded in dramatic style in stoppage time. What an ending!
Budweiser Man of the Match
Philippe Coutinho added not only a second goal to his haul at Russia 2018, but also a second man of the match award, having again been a creative hub for A Seleção.
7 – While it clearly was the late show from Brazil, the statistics back it up, too. Neymar’s strike seven minutes into stoppage time was the latest ever at a World Cup in regular time.