Saturday, April 20

Brazil cruise past Paraguay with a comfortable 4-0 win

Agency

Brazil scored twice in the last four minutes to cap a comfortable 4-0 win over Paraguay in Tuesday’s World Cup qualifier in Belo Horizonte.

According to Reuters, the defeat ended Paraguay’s hopes of qualifying for the upcoming World Cup in Qatar and further cemented Brazil’s position as one of the favourites to lift the trophy in December.

Brazil top the South American qualifying group with no defeats in 15 games. The news agency added that the win extended their unbeaten home record in World Cup qualifiers to 61 matches.

Paraguay, who have yet to win any of their first five games under coach Guillermo Barros Schelotto, are second from bottom of the 10-team group with 13 points from 16 games.

It was a successful but frustrating night for Raphinha, who scored one, had another chalked off, and also hit the post, Reuters reported.

The Leeds United winger thought he had put Brazil 1-0 up after just 93 seconds only to see the goal ruled out after a lengthy consultation with the Video Assistant Referee (VAR).

However, with 28 minutes gone he superbly controlled a long ball from Marquinhos and wriggled between two defenders to put Brazil 1-0 ahead.

He was unlucky not to get another early in the second half as he saw his volley come back off the post.

Philippe Coutinho got a deserved second for the home side just after the hour when he placed a shot into the top corner of the net from 30 meters.

Antony added another goal with four minutes left when he curled a left-foot shot past a helpless keeper.

And Rodrygo tapped home a minute later to round off a commanding performance from the five-times world champions.

Talismanic striker Neymar was out injured and there were rare starts for goalkeeper Ederson, midfielder Fabinho, left back Alex Telles and captain on the night Dani Alves, according to Reuters.

In the last game of the round, Peru and Ecuador shared the points in a scruffy 1-1 draw in Lima.

The result takes Ecuador a point closer to qualification.

Brazil and Argentina have already guaranteed their spots for the World Cup.

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