Neymar scores all four as Brazil rout Japan
The Brazilian skipper took his impressive tally to 40 goals in 58 matches
Neymar scored all four goals in a sumptuous display for Brazil as the five-times world champions routed an under-strength Japan 4-0 in a friendly in Singapore on Tuesday to maintain Dunga’s perfect start since returning as coach.
The Brazilian skipper took his impressive tally to 40 goals in 58 matches after his strikes against a shabby Japanese side on a patchy National Stadium pitch deemed “far short of international standards” by Singapore’s Football Association.
Neymar had no problems with the poor surface, however, as the Barcelona striker entertained the 51,577 crowd with flicks and tricks around his cool finishes.
He rattled the post with a free-kick a minute before opening the scoring in the 18th minute when he rounded Japan goalkeeper Eiji Kawashima and lashed the ball into an empty net after being put clear by Diego Tardelli.
The goal allowed Brazil, who had been lethargic after the heavy travel schedule and Saturday’s 2-0 win over Argentina in Beijing, to slow the tempo against the Asian champions, who were missing the injured Shinji Kagawa and opted to start with Keisuke Honda and Yuto Nagatomo on the bench.
Honda came on at the start of the second period but it was the Brazilian bench who had a greater impact, with Philippe Coutinho slipping a ball through Japan’s porous backline to Neymar, who slotted home a second in the 48th minute.
The hard-working Shinji Okazaki almost pulled one back with a right foot snap shot from a narrow angle that cannoned back off the post but it was a brief highlight for the otherwise isolated striker.
Dunga, in his second spell in charge after Luiz Felipe Scolari resigned in July after the World Cup, brought on the ageing Robinho and Kaka to get among the scoring fun.
Kaka almost obliged with his first touch, but his 77th minute header was pushed on to the bar by Kawashima.
Japan failed to clear and when a shot came back in from the left the goalkeeper could only palm it straight to Neymar who swept it home.
Kaka, back playing for Sao Paulo before he moves to Orlando City in America’s Major League Soccer, then turned provider as he swung over a cross from the left that Neymar leapt highest to head home in the 81st minute.
The win was a fourth out of four for Dunga’s Brazil, who have yet to concede a goal since he returned with the task of rebuilding the side after their humiliating 7-1 World Cup semi-final defeat to Germany and 3-0 loss to the Netherlands in the third-place match.
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