The loss of Neymar to suspension didn’t keep Brazil from downing Group C adversary Venezuela, 2-1, and clinching a spot in the Copa America quarterfinals against Paraguay.
In the 9th minute, the Little Canaries struck off a corner kick served by Robinho. Thiago Silva converted the lobbed ball with a volley past goalie Alain Baroja. The defender then pointed up into the stands at Neymar to celebrate.
Brazil’s next goal arrived after the break and started with Dani Alves feeding Robinho down the right flank, who then kicked it back to the Barcelona center back. Off to the left side, the ball landed on Willian’s feet and he sprinted to the end line before finding Roberto Firmino for the tap-in endeavor.
Venezula halved the score in the 84th minute when Juan Arango nailed a solid free-kick over the wall, and even though Jefferson was able to parry it, the resulting rebound was there for substitute Miku to bury home the header.
In the first half, Venezuela was at the mercy of Brazil, controlling the overall attacking momentum although Dunga’s men were dragging at points.
In the 16th minute, Dani Alves passed to Robinho and he collected the ball before striking it over the net; his undertaking barely missed the crossbar and urged Baroja into a sprawling exertion.
A fews minute prior to halftime, Venezuela caused a slight scare for Brazil. Alejandro Guerra led forward a sprinting Gabriel Cichero and he sent across to the opposite post that looped very close to the net.
To start the second half, Willian’s corner kick went straight to Silva and his hard, low header was knocked away due to excellent goalkeeping from Baroja.
Inside of the six-yard box three minutes into stoppage time, Miku missed a header that could’ve drew the game level.