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Brazil set to rumble

Fireworks expected in Netherlands/Chile match

By Donstan Bonn

Match Updates

Thank you for logging on to the number one newspaper in the Caribbean; Trinidad Express Newspaper. Looking forward to you joining us tomorrow as we continue our live match updates directly from Brazil. Good evening.

The results of the two matches mean that Brazil finishes atop Group A on goal difference with seven points from two wins and a draw and a goal differential of plus five, having scored seven while conceding two. They will face Chile in the round of 16.

Mexico also ended their Group A campaign on seven points but with a goal differential of plus three, scoring four and conceding one. Next up for them is a date with Group B winner the Netherlands.

Brazil enjoyed 54 per cent ball possession in a match that had over 62, 000 fans in attendance. Neymar is now the tournament's leading goalscorer with four.

90+5: It the end of both matches. Brazil triumphs 4-1 in Brasilia and Mexico defeats Croatia by a 3-1 margin in Pernambuco.

89th: Across in Pernambuco Croatia pulled a goal back in the 87th minute through Ivan Perisic but loses Ante Rebic via a red card 

84th: Goal in Brasilia. It's Brazil 4-1 as Oscar provides Fernandinho with a nice pass inside the box and he completes the move with a precise finish to the left of Itandje.

83rd: Willian's powerful effortr is blocked by a defender in brasilia while across in Pernambuco a javier Hernandez header gives Mexico a 3-0 lead.

75th: Viva Mexico. Mexico leads Croatia 2-0 as a Rafael Marquez header in the 72nd minute and an Andres Guardado bullet in the 75th give them what look like a winning result in Pernambuco.

72nd: Double substitution made as Willian replaces Neymar for Brazil and Pierre Webo comes on for Vincent Aboubakar (Cameroon).   

66th: It's still goalless in the Croatia/Mexico match so if the results remain as is then Brazil will face Chile, who lost to the Netherlands, and Mexico will take second and have to play the Nteherlands in the next round.

62nd:Brazil makes a substitution as Hulk is replaced by Ramires.

With 30 minutes left in the match can we expect more fireworks ffrom Brazil.

58th: Cameroon makes a substitution, Edgar Salli on for Benjamin Moukandjo.

49th: It's 3-1 Brazil as Fred beats Itandje with a firm header to his left. Fred, however, is lucky not to have been ruled offside.

David Luiz provided the assist with a superb cross from the left.

Fred continues his excellent goal scoring form for Brazil after a very good showing at the Confederations Cup last year.

46th: Cameroon takes the kick off to get the second half on the way in Brasilia.

Have a snack, have a drink but please return for more live updates direct from Brasilia.

It's halftime in Brasilia but moments before the whistle Hulk had an opportunity to add another goal for Brazil when he raced into the box to received a deft pass but his shot on goal was blocked by a defender.

43rd: Cameroon wins a free kick from about 25 metres out but it comes to naught as Brazil's defence effectively deals with the threat.

Brazil have taken the lead again and it's Neymar once more. It's 2-1 Brazil in Brasilia after 35 minutes.

A pass from Marcelo teed him up and he settled himself before hitting a rasping, low right-footed drive to the right of Itandje.

Neymar has just notched his fourth goal in three matches.

Joel Matip draws Cameroon back on level terms as he easily taps from off an Allan Nyom assist. It's 1-1 in Brasilia after 27 minutes. 

Goals don't come any easier than that and Matip could have close his eyes and scored after Nyom disected Brazil's defence to pick him out with an empty net at his mercy.

It's 1-0 Brazil in the 17th minute in Brasilia as Neymar scores from close range.

It was a ball squared across the face of goal by Luiz Gustavo from on the left of the field and Neymar had no difficulty beating Cameroon goalkeeper Charles Itandje form between two defenders.

Ladies and gentlemen the party is in full swing.

UPDATE

The scenes for Brazil's all-important match against Cameroon have taken on a different twist as most businesses here in Brazil have closed their doors for the match. Added to that, it's a virtual party atmosphere throughout the country.

SKOL PIlsner, a beer packaged by the Carlsberg Group, has thrown their support behind the Brazilian team by setting up after-match parties at various hotels insome parts  of the country with free beers to patrons of those establishment and DJs to supply music.

The fireworks have already began to go off in some areas as downtown Brasilia is heavy with pedestrian traffic with fans trying desperately to get to the Estadio Nacional and attempting to purchase a Brazil football T-Shirts is probably one of the most difficult things right now.

Kick-off is just a few minutes away but I would like to guess that the celebrations have already started and are more than likely to go into the wee hours of the morning should Brazil emerge victorious.

 

Today´s final round robin fixtures in Group A of the FIFA World Cup 2014 throws up two very interesting clashes as host Brazil takes on Cameroon at the Estadio Nacional in Brasilia and Croatia set for a do or die battle against Mexico at the Arena Pernambuco in Recife with both matches set to kick off at 4.00 pm.

Cameroon is out of the equation after having lost their first two matches by 1-0 and 4-0 margins to Mexico and Croatia, respectively, even if they were to achieve the improbable and defeat Brazil.

A draw will be sufficient to send Brazil through to the round of 16 after securing four points from their two matches contested, however, they would want to restore some confidence with a morale boosting win following their goalless draw with Mexico, while defeat will be unthinkable and unforgiveable.

Brazil holds the upper hand with three wins and a solitary loss in four clashes with their African opponent. A 3-0 triumph at the 1994 World Cup was followed by a 2-0 victory in an international friendly in November of 1996 before registering another 2-0 win at the 2001 Confederations Cup. Cameroon would reverse the last defeat two years later with a 1-0 result in their favour at the 2003 Confederations Cup.

A win for Brazil will see them top the group and face either the Netherlands or Chile in the next round. One can only expect a sea of yellow to be flowing through Brasilia in a few hours from now.

The Mexico/Croatia match is more of a puzzle if ever there was one. The Central American unit has four points so a draw will see them through but they face a side that bounced back from their 3-1 loss to Brazil with an emphatic 4-0 hammering of Cameroon, whom the Mexicans defeated by a solitary goal.    

Mexico remains one of the two remaining teams to have yet conceded a goal at the World Cup (Nigeria being the other) but they trail the Croats 1-2 in head to head combat. And although the last time the teams met Mexico prevailed 1-0 in a group encounter at the 2002 World Cup, Croatia has never conceded more than one goal against them.

Croatia comes into the match knowing that nothing less than a win will see them through to the next round but has never won their last game at the group stages at the World Cup while the last time Mexico won their final group fixture was in 1986 when they hosted the tournament.

This fixture promises to be a treat but based on history, don´t expect too many goals.

Group B, which will be decided some two hours earlier, is not as intricate as the two teams moving forward have already been decided.

Chile takes on the Netherlands at the Arena Corinthians in Sao Paulo in a clash to decide who tops the group. Both teams have a maximum six points from their two matches and are already assured of round of 16 berths but the winner of the group will more than likely avoid Brazil as their next opponent.

They enter this contest with comfortable wins over defending champion Spain and with the Netherlands scoring eight goals while conceding three and Chile finding the back of the net five times with one against, fans can expect a lot more goals from the two attack-minded outfits.

It´s difficult to predict just who is going to emerge victorious as the teams have only met once before in international competition with the match ending in a 2-2 stalemate at the 1928 Olympic Games.

In the other Group B contest at Curitiba´s Arena da Baixada, Spain faces a competent-looking Australia in a dead rubber. No one expected Spain to be in this position but they will want to leave the tournament on a winning note and avoid repeating France´s feat in 2002 of exiting a World Cup at the group stage as the defending champion without winning a match. However, based on Australia´s performance against the Netherlands, they showed that they will be no rollover.

 

 

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