Gabriel Jesus & Roberto Firmino Lead Brazil Into the Copa America Finals

Gabriel Jesus and Roberto Firmino are hometown heroes…

The Brazilian soccer players scored the two goals that helped lead Brazil to a 2-0 victory against old rival Argentina in the Copa America semifinals.

Gabriel Jesus & Roberto Firmino

Both sides tried to impose themselves physically early on but it was Jesus who gave Brazil the lead after 19 minutes when Firmino sent in a low cross for the unmarked striker to side-foot home from close range.

The two combined again on the counter-attack after 71 minutes to make it 2-0 after great work from Jesus left Firmino with the simplest of tap-ins.

Brazil, who have lost twice in 42 games under coach Tite, will face either Peru or Chile in Sunday’s final at Maracana Stadiumin Rio de Janeiro and captain Dani Alves said their goal was within reach.

“There is one more step to go before we fulfil our objective,” he added. “The standard here is very high there are no easy teams. You have to work and fight for what you want and we worked for this.”

Argentina have not beaten Brazil in a major competitive fixture dating back to 2005 and that run rarely looked like ending in front of 52,000 fans at the Mineirao Stadiumin Belo Horizonte.

Sergio Aguero hit the bar with a header in the first half and Lionel Messi struck the post 11 minutes into the second period but the visitors had little luck in front of goal and were never on top for any length of time.

While the tournament has been plagued by lengthy stoppages for the video assistant referee (VAR), Tuesday’s officials preferred to let the game run, though Argentina were incensed VAR did not come into play when Arthur felled one of their players at a corner.

Messi, who has still not won a major title with Argentina, was more influential than in his first few matches here but was still a pale shadow of the player who has won everything with his club side.

“We had chances, the ball hit the woodwork, it flashed across the six-yard box, there were penalties that weren’t given,” said Messi, who like coach Lionel Scalonicomplained about the refereeing.

“Today it just didn’t happen.”

Argentina bow out after scoring just five goals in five games and are still looking for their first major title since lifting the Copa America in 1993.

“We knew that it would be difficult because of the players they have,” Brazil’s Casemiro said.

“It’s about details. We knew it would be scrappy and that there would be wind-ups and time wasting. But we have to congratulate our strikers who did a great job. When they got chances, they scored.”

Neymar Leads Brazil to Victory Over Mexico at the FIFA World Cup

Neymar is makin’ his mark on the global stage’…

The 26-year-old Brazilian soccer star helped propel his national team into the quarterfinals at the FIFA World Cup by scoring the winning goal against Mexico.

Neymar

It was Neymar’s second goal at the 2018 World Cup, and his sixth overall in World Cup competition.

Roberto Firmino put it away near the buzzer to seal the 2-0 victory, ending a tournament for El Tri that started perfectly and ended horribly.

The talented Brazilians were by far the stronger team in the match, but Mexico had chances to make it more of a game. In the end, Mexico leaves Russia with consecutive scoreless matches. Brazil had 21 shots, 10 on frame, but a fantastic performance from keeper Guillermo Ochoa kept Mexico in it.

Mexico saw plenty of the ball in the box, recording 13 shots, but only one tested Alisson in goal.

With the match going back and forth, the winner came on 51 minutes off a stellar bit of play by Neymar. He got the ball to Willian, and the winger returned the favor in front of goal to open the scoring.

Brazil will next face Belgium in the quarterfinals.

Brazil finished fourth in the cup in 2014, but crashed out in the quarterfinals in 2006 and 2010.