This years Copa America finished on Sunday night, as hosts Brazil claimed a 3-1 win over Peru at the Maracana, following the second half sending dismissal of goalscorer Gabriel Jesus with 20 minutes remaining.
After looking in control for much of the match, the Selecao were hanging on to the lead, but a late spot-kick from Richarlison sealed the win.
Brazils’ team not always full of flair players
There is this myth about Brazil teams that they are always great teams full of flair players. However, in truth, the Selecao are usually a bunch of hard-working players with good technical ability, with a few special players thrown in.
The current squad is no doubt a talented one with the likes of Jesus, Roberto Firmino, Philippe Coutinho, Everton and Richarlison all undoubtedly talented. However, despite the triumph, it is hard not to believe they missed Neymar’s stardust.
For all the baggage and drama he brings, his magical ability with a football is undeniable. He is this generation’s Ronaldo, Romario or Ronaldinho. Unfortunately for the PSG star, he missed out on the victory through injury.
Just had to win in any manner
Brazil were desperate to end a surprising 12-year winless run at Copa America. That meant winning the trophy in any manner. When Jesus saw red in the second half Peru mounted a sustained period of pressure.
However, Tite made an inspired substitution in bringing on Richarlison for the last 15 minutes. The Everton star was sent on to hold the ball up and keep it away from Alisson’s goal.
He did it brilliantly, as Brazil turned the tide by almost wasting time by giving the youngster the ball down the flank and letting him play keep-ball. Richarlison also put the cherry on the cake by sealing victory in the final minute with that aforementioned penalty kick.
Brazil may not have sparkled throughout the tournament, but in the end, the Selecao got the job done and finally won the Copa America after a long wait by their high standards.
Did Brazil deserve to win the Copa America 2019?