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2022 World Cup | Vinícius Júnior equals Neymar’s goal marker in first-half goal-fest against South Korea

The Real Madrid starlet opened his tournament account in the seventh minute with an expert finish to set Brazil off and running in a first-half rout

World Cup favorites Brazil have turned on the style in relative comfort in the opening forty-five minutes of action at Stadium 974 in Doha after blitzing South Korea for four goals to all-but-guarantee their place in the quarterfinals.

On a night when an entire nation has football legend Pelé on their minds as the national hero continues to battle illness, A Seleçao has put on a display that the three-time World cup winning forward is no doubt immensely proud of after goals from Vinícius Júnior, Neymar (penalty), Richarlison, and Lucas Paquetá highlighted arguably the best half of football put on by any nation in Qatar this winter.

Neymar’s effort from the penalty spot drew him one step closer to tying Pelé’s long-standing goal record for Brazil when the Paris Saint-Germain star cooly slotted home from twelve yards out, but Vini Jr’s match opener equaled Neymar when he became the youngest goalscorer for Brazil (22) since the PSG man found the back of the net at the same age during the 2014 tournament.

It was Vini Jr’s first goal of the tournament on a night when he was brought back into the starting XI by Tite despite Arsenal starlet Gabriel Martinelli producing a fantastic appearance in his own right during Brazil’s shock 1-0 loss against Cameroon to close out group play.

Having become a vital piece of the puzzle at the Santiago Bernabeu, the technical master has gained the same status for his country as part of the next cycle of talent as Brazil continues to be arguably the producer of young talent anywhere in the world.

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Andrew Thompson

US-based Football writer. German football guru with a wealth of experience in youth development and analysis. Data aficionado. Happily championing the notion that Americans have a knowledgeable voice in the beautiful game.

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