A brace from Richarlison secured the tournament favourites’ first win of the tournament.
An overwhelming yellow and green presence dominated the stands at the iconic Lusail Stadium, as Brazil kicked off its debut match at the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 against Serbia.
Both sides showed their game face early on, with a booking for Serbia in the 6th minute.
Less than ten mins later, superstar forward Neymar almost found the back of the net from a corner kick that sent the 80,000 capacity stadium roaring.
Serbia shows grit
However, it was hard to dampen the spirits of the Serbs, who continued to fight on with sporadic attempts to make a break down the field.
With 21 minutes on the clock, Neymar delivered a strike fit for a player of his calibre, but was blocked by Serbia’s Milos Veljkovic.
Brazil had another go just moments later, but Milinkovic-Savic was quick on his feet to protect his goal. A similar attempt was made at 35 minutes, to no avail.
By the end of the first half, Brazil held 60% possession, though was is clear that the Canarinha could not relax just yet. Brazil picked up the pace after a failed break by Serbia, but Vinicius Jr. was swiftly stopped in his tracks.
The half time whistle was blown with no action in either net, however it seems that words of inspiration were said in the locker rooms, with both teams returning with a show of confidence for the second half.
Brazil go ahead
In the 48th minute, Gudelj received a yellow card after taking down Neymar.
Exhibiting resilient defence, the Serbia team protected the net from an incoming Brazil attack.
A stunning tap from Alex Sandro in the 59th minute shook the left post, warming up the net for the incoming strike from Richarlison. The goal, which was his team’s first at Qatar 2022, prompted an eruption of joy from fans at the stadium.
The South Americans had another chance to add to the score sheet, but a clumsy looking Vinicius slipped while on the ball.
A defiant Serbian team refused to bow, and a to and fro in the Brazilian box at the 70th minute ended with a header away from Marquinhos.
Richarlison delivered a spectacle for the 88,103 fans in attendance with a stunning volley into the goal that shook the stadium.
With Serbia’s confidence knocked by the two goals, the remainder of the game appeared to be one-sided, with play centred around the Eagles’ box as Brazil’s forwards took several attempts on goal.
Serbia ended the match with dampened spirits, with clumsy mistakes marking the final whistle loomed closer.