Brazil defeated South American rivals Colombia 2-0 in the quarter-finals of the Men’s Olympic Football Tournament Rio 2016 after goals from Neymar and Luan.
Captain Neymar’s early goal helped ease the pressure on the host nation on what became a rather tense encounter between two sides hungry to continue their Rio 2016 journeys.
Colombia almost opened the scoring in the eighth minute when Brazil goalkeeper Weverton handled a back pass from Rodrigo Caio a little too casually, resulting in a dangerous opportunity for Harold Preciado, who nearly deflected Weverton’s clearance into Brazil’s goal with a sliding challenge.
Tension turned to relief in the 12th minute when Neymar stepped up and converted a free-kick close to 25 yards from the Colombian goal, sending the crowd of 41,560 at the Arena Corinthians in Sao Paulo into a frenzy. Colombia keeper Cristian Bonilla could do nothing about the Barcelona man’s well-placed, curling effort.
Rodrigo Caio nearly doubled the hosts’ lead early in the second half but his headed effort was saved off the goalline by Bonilla. However, in the 83rd minute, Luan sealed A Seleção‘s place in the next round with a well-taken, lobbed effort from 20 yards out.
Brazil continue their pursuit of an elusive Olympic gold medal against Honduras in the semi-finals at the historic Maracanã stadium in Rio de Janeiro on Wednesday.