Qatar World Cup 2022: A look at the 5 top moments as Croatia pips Brazil to enter semis
Qatar World Cup 2022: Brazil and Croatia came up with a nail-biting display of solid gameplay, only for the latter to go past and enter the semis on penalties. Here are the top five moments from the contest.
Record five-time former champion Brazil and European giants Croatia came up with an exhilarating display of footballing gameplay during the quarterfinal of the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar. Played at the Education City Stadium in Al Rayyan on Friday, the latter ensured its way through to the semis with a hard-fought penalty victory. As the Blazers await either the Netherlands or arch-rival Argentina in the semis, we present the top five moments from this exciting match.
Croatian defence was too strong to budge
Like the previous matches, the Croatian defence was a brick wall for the Brazilians. With four men on the defence, Josip Juranovic and Dejan Lovren were a class apart. It took the Seleção Canarinho something innovative and unique to get through it to score.
Dominik Livakovic's rock-solid keeping will attract club eyeballs
If the Croatian defence was not enough to irritate the Brazilians, Livakovic made life equally difficult for them. Three of the four shots on target were denied by him, while Neymar had to devise a plan to bisect him for the goal. Meanwhile, his performance will undoubtedly attract eyeballs from top European clubs.
Neymar is indeed the man
With the Croatian defence and Livakovic making things challenging for the Brazilians, it had to be Neymar to come up with something special. He put his Barcelona stint into effect by playing some short passes to bypass the defence and used his experience to go past Livakovic for the goal.
Brazilian defence should have acted smart towards the end
The Blazers did well to equalise in the 117th, thanks to Bruno Petkovic. However, more than him, it is the Brazilian defence to be blamed that opened up, even at the closing stages of extra time, when it should have been conniving enough to 'park the bus'.
Brazil needs to work on penalties
Penalties have never been the lifeline for Brazil, and it was proved once again. The shots fired by Casemiro and Marquinhos were wide and always had a 50-50 chance of entering the goal or hitting the post. Instead, it should work on firing the ball off the ground rather than keeping it low.