Even before the match started, we knew this was going to be a special one, as both teams – and sets of fans – absolutely belted out their respective anthems, filling the Estádio Mineirão in Belo Horizonte with plenty of noise. Add to that two teams bent on attack, and with marked weaknesses in defense, and it’s no wonder the first 45 minutes flew by.
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18′: It looked as though own goal struck once more, knocking in his fourth goal of the competition. It seemed Gonzalo Jara put Brazil in front in a manner that very well could have been predicted. Neymar sent in the corner, Thiago Silva got his head on it, and David Luiz celebrated like he put it in the net. Replays seemed to show the ball came off the Chile defender, but FIFA credited it to David Luiz.
32′: Chile tie it up! A short set of passes stemming from a failed throw-in by Brazil confounds the defenders, eventually resulting in a loose ball landing at the feet of Alexis Sánchez, waiting in the middle. His low shot is too quick for Júlio César, who cant get down enough to stop it from finding the back of the net.
Other key moments
6′: Marcelo has the first shot of the game, and unlike against Croatia, it’s toward Claudio Bravo’s net. It’s wide, though.
7′: Neymar gets treated with the magic spray, perhaps in an attempt to slow down what’s already been an intense game.
8′: Bravo saves on Hulk.
13′: Hulk appeals for a penalty after receiving an elbow in his back, but Howard Webb just shakes his head.
17′: Eugenio Mena gets a yellow, will miss the next match should Chile progress.
18′: which it doesn’t look like they’re going to do. Goal for Brazil.
32′: Or might Chile go through? Alexis Sánchez puts in the equalizer. 1-1.
36′: Brazil come agonizingly close to taking the lead once more, but Neymar’s header is deflected off Chile defender Silva. The resulting corner results in chaos, but somehow Brazil can’t knock it in.
39′: Neymar gets into a dangerous position, ends up going to ground. Fred picks up the slack, only to send his effort well high. He’s rocking an amazing mustache, however.
40′: Francisco Silva receives a yellow, will miss the next match if Chile progress. And with the way he’s playing, that may actually be to Chile’s benefit.
42′: Arturo Vidal easily zips past the Brazilian defense, but his effort is wide. Brazil’s counter gives Dani Alves a perfect opportunity, but Bravo is able to dig it out from under the bar.
45′: Chile very nearly take a lead going into the break, but this time the Brazil defense are there, smothering Charles Aránguiz to knock out for a corner.
Brazil: Júlio César, Dani Alves, Thiago Silva, David Luiz, Marcelo; Luiz Gustavo, Fernandinho, Oscar; Neymar, Hulk, Fred.
Chile: Bravo; Silva, Medel, Jara; Isla, Aranguiz, Diaz, Mena; Vidal; Sánchez, Vargas.
Question for the second half
Who will win?
Um…yeah. These ones actually need a winner. Of course, if the game is tied after 90 minutes, we’ll have 30 more minutes in which the deadlock could be broken. And with the way this match is being played, probably no one is going to root against that possibility Except, of course, supporters of Brazil or Chile. They’re the ones that are going to be terrified should this go to penalties.
With the way both defenses are performing, and the fierce attack of both sides, this really could go either way.