Richarlison fires Brazil to dominant win over Serbia to send warning to World Cup rivals

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Richarlison fires Brazil to dominant win over Serbia to send warning to World Cup rivals
Updated
Richarlison scored twice for Brazil
Richarlison scored twice for Brazil
StatsPerform, AFP
A spectacular scissor kick and a nonchalant tap-in from Richarlison in the second half saw a very attacking Brazil side ease to a 2-0 victory over Serbia at Lusail Iconic Stadium as they rounded off the first round of matches in style.

Full Time: Brazil 2 Serbia 0

22:01 CET: The goal of the game was no doubt Richarlison's second, a sumptuous scissor kick, right out of the top draw. But what you may have missed was the intricate build-up beforehand. 

Richarlison's goal sequence
StatsPerform

21:59 CET: A few more details from tonight's game - Brazil were dominant in the second half and after the second goal they did not relinquish that control.

Brazil v Serbia momentum
StatsPerform

21:56 CET: Two goals in 11 minutes capped off a sublime second half performance from Brazil, who hit the woodwork three times for their troubles. They showed their attacking prowess against Serbia, who withstood well in the first half, but were blown away by a rampant Brazil.

Check out our report from Alex Waite, if you missed any of tonight's game and view the full match stats thanks to StatsPerform. 

Full Match Statistics
StatsPerform

Second Half

21:47 CET: We will have seven minutes of added time. The final whistle can't come soon enough for Serbia, who have been blown away in the second half.

21:45 CET: Raphinha has been taken off for Gabriel Martinelli. Brazil's strength in depth in the attacking positions is obscene. Remember, Roberto Fiminio was left at home. Two minutes left of the 90.

21:44 CET: Rodrygo enters the competition and nearly comes up trumps, only to see his 20-yard effort narrowly go over the bar.

21:40 CET: They all want a piece of the action. This time Brazil's Fred tests Milinkovic-Savic with a stinging drive from distance. It's like they are having a competition to see who can score the best goal tonight.

21:39 CET: Casemiro rattles the upright with a delicious curling effort. Brazil are toying with Serbia now. Rodrygo then forces a sharp stop from the goalkeeper.

21:37 CET: Richarlison's successful evening has come to an end with Gabriel Jesus coming on in his stead. Not a bad replacement to have up your sleeve in the final 10 minutes. Neymar has also exited stage left, in his place comes Manchester United's Antony.

21:34 CET: After that goal, and with 14 minutes to play, Tite has gone to his bench for the first time. He brings on Rodrygo for the impressive Vinicius Jr and Fred for Lucas Pacqueta.

21:30 CET: OH RICHARLISON, THAT IS FILTHY! 2-0 BRAZIL

Brazil have had some wonderful strikers down the years, and most would be applauding that goal from Richarlison. He receives the ball from the left before controlling and performing an acrobatic bicycle kick that flies into the back of the net. A glorious goal!

21:28 CET: Serbia go close from a corner! After a neat flick-on at the near post, Brazil have to clear the ball off their own line. Headers exchanged in the six-yard box, they are able to scramble away. Serbia are showing there is some fight in them despite being a goal down.

21:25 CET: With this attacking switch comes risk and they nearly pay immediately as Brazil fly forward. Vinicius Jr has a chance to shoot in the box, but slips and skews the strike into the crowd.

21:23 CET: Now a goal down, Serbia are forced into a change. They bring off Sasa Lukic and Filip Mladenovic for striker Dusan Vlahovic and Darko Lazovic to strengthen their midfield. It looks a 4-3-3 will be used now by the men in red.

21:20 CET: GOAL FOR BRAZIL! IT HAS BEEN COMING!

A goal that combines three of the frontmen and it's deserved. Neymar jinks into the box before Vinicius Jr rifles a shot at goal. Milinkovic-Savic makes the initial save, but Richarlison is on hand to tap in a simple goal. 

21:17 CET: OFF THE POST! Alex Sandro rifles a vicious shot towards goal, beats the goalkeeper, but can't beat the upright and the ball cannons off the bottom of the post. What an effort. An hour gone in Lusail and Brazil are knocking on the door.

21:16 CET: A rare corner for Serbia is swung in by Tadic, but Brazil deal with it well at the near post and clear their lines.

21:14 CET: Double change for Serbia as the booked Gudelj is replaced by Ivan Ilic and Andrija Zivkovic comes off for Nemanja Radonjic. Let's see if we get a change of system from Dragan Stojkovic after the substitutes.

21:13 CET: It's relentless pressure from Brazil. This time, Vinicius picks out Neymar on the penalty spot, but his half volley goes narrowly wide of the left hand post. His best chance to score of the game so far. 

21:11 CET: What a great challenge from Pavlovic. On a booking, he is the last line of defence as Raphinha is through again, but the tall Serbian defender covers great ground and times his tackle to perfection. 

21:08 CET: Neymar gets up to take it but he only finds the wall and from the resulting corner, Serbia are able to bundle it away.

21:06 CET: Nemanja Gudelj brings down Neymar on the edge of the box and gets himself a booking for his troubles. Dangerous times for Serbia.

21:04 CET: Immediately Brazil are on the attack and Raphinha is once again denied by Milinkovic-Savic as he makes a decent save. He should score there.

21:03 CET: The men in red get us back under way in Lusail Iconic Stadium. No changes to either side at the break.

Half Time

20:48 CET: Here are the first half stats for your perusal.

First half statistics
StatsPerform

20:46 CET: And that is the end of the first half. A great pace to the game, but Brazil have created fewer chances than expected given their attacking prowess. Serbia will be happier of the sides having defended well, but they will be concerned with the isolated figure of Mitrovic, who is yet to have any impact on the game.

First Half

20:45 CET: A breathless first half doesn't need much added time - we will play just one extra minute before the break.

20:40 CET: Five minutes to go until the break and Serbia are looking as comfortable as ever against this attacking Brazil line-up. Some nice possession for them sees them up the pitch, but the counter is on and Brazil spring forward with Vinicius one-on-one with the keeper only for Nikola Milenkovic to make a great last-ditch challenge.

20:34 CET: Only the three goal attempts so far - all from Brazil - however this game is being played at a fair rate. Brazil forward again and after some neat interplay, Raphinha has a clear line at goal but his shot is tame and rolls into the grateful arms of Milinkovic-Savic.

20:32 CET: Again, Milinkovic-Savic is called into action - he is in for a busy night - as he denies Raphinha at the near post following a Neymar pass.

20:31 CET: Brazil have a corner after some more direct play than we have seen from them so far. Serbia are withstanding the pressure.

20:28 CET: They work it short but the cross is fired over the heads of everyone and Serbia can try to build an attack of their own.

20:27 CET: Brazil threatening down the left once again and Milinkovic-Savic seems to do a great job in stopping Vinicius Jr, but VAR wants to have a look a this. Nothing doing and Brazil have a dangerous free kick on the left side.

20:25 CET: A break for Serbia down the right and Andrija Zivkovic tries to find the imposing figure of Aleksandar Mitrovic, but Allison in the Brazil goal is equal to it.

20:21 CET: Every Brazilian player fancies their chances with a shot and Casemiro lets fly from range - comfortably caught by the Serbia keeper.

20:19 CET: The referee Alireza Faghani is letting play flow nicely so far, but he brings it back for a foul on Neymar. This game has a good amount of spice so far.

20:13 CET: Brazil are using their wingers really effectively so far to stretch the play. This time, Vinicius Jr gets to the byline and wins a corner. Neymar, after retaking, can only find the gloves of the goalkeeper Vanja Milinkovic-Savic.

20:10 CET: A wonderful ball into the box from Brazil finds Neymar, but he is unable to get a shot away, smothered by red shirts. Brazil are looking potent.

20:06 CET: The early tempo is high and tackles are already snapping in. Strahinja Pavlovic picks up the first booking of the game after just six minutes for a late challenge, he will now need to be extra careful against that dangerous front four of Brazil.

20:04 CET: It looks like Serbia are going to fight fire with fire as they go man-to-man with their own press. The dangers of that are nearly seen straight away as Raphinha escapes down the right. His cross can't beat the defence, but a warning - if they needed one - for Serbia.

20:02 CET: With their impressively attacking front four, it is clear Brazil are going to be pressing Serbia high up the pitch. Can they play around it and exploit the extra man in midfield?

20:00 CET: It will be Brazil to get us going in their traditional yellow strip. Here we go!

Pre-match

19:56 CET: Both anthems sung perfectly and we are ready for kick off.

19:48 CET: The final group game of the first round of World Cup fixtures is nearly upon us. It has been a whirlwind few days in Qatar with two major shocks. Can Serbia pull off another tonight?

Team News

Brazil coach Tite opted to start Vinicius Jr. in a four-man attack for their World Cup Group G opener against Serbia on Thursday.

Tite will unleash Vinicius alongside Neymar, Richarlison and Raphinha, with only two genuine midfielders in Lucas Paqueta and Casemiro as Brazil begin their quest for a record-extending sixth World Cup trophy.

Serbia, who were sweating on Aleksandar Mitrovic's availability due to an ankle injury, named their leading striker in the starting line-up.

He will play alongside Filip Kostic, who was also a last-minute question mark for coach Dragan Stojkovic due to injury, with striker Dusan Vlahovic on the bench.

Brazil: Alisson; Danilo, Thiago Silva (c), Marquinhos, Alex Sandro; Casemiro, Lucas Paqueta, Neymar; Vinicius Jr., Raphinha, Richarlison.

Serbia: Vanja Milinkovic-Savic, Milos Veljkovic, Filip Mladenovic, Strahinja Pavlovic, Nikola Milenkovic, Andrija Zivkovic, Nemanja Gudelj, Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, Sasa Lukic, Dusan Tadic (c), Aleksandar Mitrovic.

Introduction

Brazil's recent World Cup performances have been far from impressive, considering their footballing status in the tournament. Being the country with the most World Cup triumphs, much is expected from the Selecao every year, lead by talisman Neymar, who will be looking to prove his critics wrong. Few of their main rivals have lived up to the expectations which, in a way, gives the South American side a bit of an edge as they face Serbia.

Follow all the action with us right here and from 19:55 CET, we will have live audio commentary for you to enjoy.