Brazil thrashes Bolivia despite Neymar injury

Brazil easily defeated Bolivia by 5-0 in their CONMEBOL World Cup qualifier despite losing star player Neymar Jr later on in the game.

Neymar, 24, began the scorefest for the five-time World Cup winners at the 11th minute. With a defender behind him, he traded passes with Gabriel Jesus before tapping in to an unguarded net.

Liverpool’s Phiippe Coutinho added Brazil’s second 15 minutes later, sweeping into the far corner after a wonderful solo run and layoff from Giuliano.

The Selecao claimed their third in the 39th minute through Filipe Luis. Neymar played him in on goal before the Atletico Madrid player smashed past Bolivia goalkeeper Carlos Lampe at the near post.

Brazil then completed their dominating half with a dazzling counter-attack just before the break, with Gabriel Jesus lifting his left-footed shot into the roof of Lempe’s net after receiving another well-weighted pass from Neymar behind the Bolivia defence.

As Brazil slowed down after the break, Neymar went to ground after being accidentally elbowed during a one-on-one encounter with a Bolivian defender near the touchline. His face streaming with blood from a gash, he was substituted by Willian at the 69-minute mark.

However, it would not have affect the chances for the Barcelona forward to be in Brazil’s next match – he had already received a 36th-minute yellow card that will rule him out of next Tuesday’s qualifier against Venezuela.

Brazilian substitute Roberto Firmino, who came on for Gabriel Jesus, proceeded to finish the dismantling of Bolivia 15 minutes from time with an uncontested header.

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