Neymar hits back at World Cup critics

Neymar- cropped

Brazil's forward Philippe Coutinho (left) shoots to score a goal during the Russian Federation 2018 World Cup Group E football match between Brazil and Costa Rica at the Saint Petersburg Stadium in Saint Petersburg on Jun 22, 2018.

After Brazil's Neymar took a spectacularly languid fall in the penalty area, social media users wasted no time in pointing out how unconvincing it was.

Brazil and Costa Rica supporters were in for a surprise on Friday as both teams walked out for their World Cup Group E clash in St Petersburg wearing away colours despite no apparent clash in their home kits.

Brazil's forward Neymar (C) dribbles past Costa Rica's midfielder Celso Borges.

Costa Rica - rightly anticipating that Brazil would enjoy the lion's share of possession - sat deep but looked unsafe when they were given the rare opportunity to counter.

The clock had ticked past 90 minutes when Marcelo crossed from the left and substitute Roberto Firmino headed the ball back across goal to Gabriel Jesus.

Costa Rica have no new injury problems but could opt to change their team after failing to offer much in attack against Serbia.

Brazil went into halftime with the boos and whistles of their own fans ringing in their ears but emerged with a renewed sense of objective, with Jesus heading against the bar four minutes after the restart and Coutinho sending the follow-up effort narrowly wide.


Tite fell to the floor as he sped onto the pitch following Coutinho's strike.

Brazil's Neymar takes a tumble and is awarded a penalty, later reversed.

The world's most expensive player was making just his 4th appearance after breaking a bone in his foot in February.

Brazil have won nine of their 10 previous internationals against Costa Rica, losing only in a friendly in March 1960.

- Costa Rica are winless in their last five World Cup matches (D3 L2).

"It's not normal to cry in the second game of a World Cup", Brazil's biggest newspaper, O Globo, said.

- In all worldwide matches, Brazil are unbeaten in 13 games (W9 D4 L0), conceding just three goals in that run.

Costa Rica's only previous World Cup victory against South American opposition came in the 2014 tournament (3-1 vs Uruguay).

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