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This blog reflects on soccer qua football all over the world. The blog has a specific investment in attractive, attacking football and, as such, focuses on Brazil, the most emphatic historical exponent of the beautiful game.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Brazil Scrape By Zambia, Leaving Scolari To Mull Over Options In Attack

Brazil defeated Zambia 2-0 to secure their fourth consecutive victory although the match illustrated that coach Luiz Felipe Scolari still has significant work to do before the World Cup in order to build a championship winning team. In the second half, substitute Oscar opened the scoring for Brazil with a sublime curling strike, and Dede followed-up minutes later by heading in a Neymar corner. Scolari had started with the attacking trio of Neymar, Pato and Lucas Moura behind Ramires, but Pato, Moura and Ramires failed to impress such that Brazil resorted to the familiar formation of Oscar, Neymar, Jo, Hulk in the second half. Bench players Maxwell and Dede impressed in defense, with Maxwell, in particular, making a convincing a case as the first choice backup to Real Madrid's Marcelo. Up front, however, the first half failure of Ramires, Pato and Lucas Mouras to pose any kind of credible, sustained attacking threat means that Scolari still has thinking to do as he considers backup alternatives to Oscar, Hulk and centre-forwards Jo and Fred. 

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