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David Luiz fires Brazil into the semis

The Fortaleza Stadium was a sea of yellow when Colombia took on the host nation; Brazil for the second quarter final match of the 2014 World Cup. Colombia, whose home kit is yellow also, had to don their red away strip as Brazil wore their traditional yellow jersey.

The game started with Brazil looking to get control of the game with Paulinho and Fernandinho particularly busy in the middle and Maicon pushing up from the right. Zapata did well to track Neymar’s run on the 6th minute but Brazil took advantage from the ensuing corner kick with the much maligned Thiago Silva stealing in unmarked at the far end and scoring with his knee.

Guarin’s free kick on the 9th minute went over and Cuadrado’s attempt on the 11th minute went wide, as Colombia fought to get back in the game. James Rodriguez, who had been receiving close attention from Fernandinho, earned a free kick for Colombia on the 13th minute but the kick came to nothing. Maicon went down on the 14th minute for a high foot from Ibarbo. Neymar and Marcelo combine to dispossess Cuadrado on the 15th minute and he attempts to counter. Ospina pulled off a double save from Hulk and Oscar on the 19th minute as Colombia defend.

Zapata robbed Paulinho in the box on the 23rd minute to foil Brazil’s attack. Hulk release Marcelo, but his shot was directed away by a Fred header. Ospina went down well to save from Hulk on the 27th minute. David Luiz strode forward on the 30th minute but was eventually stopped by Zapata, just outside the box. Oscar did well to recover the ball from Zapata and launch another attack for Brazil.

Maicon won a corner on the 33rd minute but Neymar’s kick went narrowly wide of the far post. Armero’s cross on the 35th minute led to Fernandinho’s high foot on Ibarbo and earned Colombia a free kick. James Rodriguez’s free kick was cleared and the second saved by Julio Cesar. Brazil attacked again on the 39th minute but Hulk fired wide from within the box. Neymar won a free kick outside the box on the 42nd minute, but his kick went over. Zuniga catches Hulk on the 44th minute. The first half ends 1:0 in favour of Brazil. Fernandinho has done a good job of stopping James Rodriguez and escapes without a caution in the first half.

Adrian Ramos came on for Ibarbo at the start of the second half as Colombia sought to get an equaliser. Fernandinho’s run on the 50th minute was stopped illegitimately by Guarin but Neymar’s free kick went wide.

Rodriguez’s free kick after a foul on Cuadrado was cleared and Brazil attacked at the other end. Neymar earned a free kick which was saved by Ospina. Thiago Silva’s interception of the ball from Ospina’s goal kick earned him a caution that will ensure he misses the semi finals. Rodriguez’s free kick on the 66th minute resulted in Yepes bundling the ball into the net but the flag had gone up for off side.

Hulk’s run was halted by Rodriguez’ on the 67th minute and he got a caution for his efforts.  David Luiz stepped up to fire a ferocious free kick home on the 69th minute, for Brazil’s second goal.

Colombia brings on Bacca for Gutierrez as they chase the game. Julio Cesar brings down Bacca on the 77th minute as the lively forward attempts to get unto Rodriguez’s pass. Penalty kick for Colombia as Julio Cesar is cautioned for the foul. Rodriguez steps forward and fires home from the spot to half the deficit and give Colombia hope. Colombia brings on Quintero for Cuadrado on the 80th minute as they chase the equaliser.

Brazil brings on Ramires for Hulk on the 82nd minute as Brazil defend a Quintero corner. Fine attack from Colombia as Bacca finds Armero on the left, but the flag goes up for offside. Zuniga powers in from the right, but Oscar tackles to push away for corner. Hernanes is brought on for Paulinho as Brazil defends their lead. Brazil counters through Ramires and Oscar from the corner and Henrique replaces the injured Neymar. Rodriguez’s corner on the 92nd minute is headed wide by Ramos as Brazil heave a sigh of relief.

Quintero’s free kick is headed away for a goal kick by Ramos. Brazil counters through Ramires who wins a free kick as the referee’s whistle signals the end of this enthralling encounter. Brazil win 2:1.

David Luiz’s magnificent free kick pulls Brazil into the semis and leaves James Rodriguez in tears, inspite of his six goals in the tournament. End of the road for Mario Yepes and his fascinating Colombian team.

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About Kene Okoye

A creative writer, banker, pianist, composer and music promoter, Kene documents events and presents his viewpoint in compelling narratives. He sets out to create vivid pictures with his intelligent use of words and seeks to engage, thrill, educate and inspire the reader. Come on and enjoy yourself.

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