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World Cup Recap: Brazil vs. Chile

There are not enough adjectives to describe what took place in Bello Horizonte as the knockout stages of Brazil 2014 got under way.  90 minutes were not enough, 30 extra minutes were not enough and we were provided with the first penalty shootout of this World Cup to decide whether Brazil or Chile advance into the quarter finals.

In dramatic fashion Brazil survived a high energy, hard fought game getting a 3-2 advantage in the penalty shootout over Chile.

The Brazilians got off to the perfect start when, a flick from captain Thiago Silva, on a Neymar corner kick, defender David Luiz scored his first international goal and put the host nation ahead.  The Chileans, who had been eliminated from the World Cup by Brazil on three different occasions including the last edition in South Africa, where looking to break the streak and get a historic result.

Their answer to Luiz’s goal did not take long after an error by the Brazilians on their own defensive third provided Chile with a great opportunity.  Chile’s Alexis Sanchez right footed the ball past Goalkeeper Julio Cesar to tie the score at one in the 32nd minute.

More than 80 stressful minutes followed for both South American countries that saw both keepers tested to the max on several occasions.

Brazil seemed to grab the lead back in the 55th minute when forward Hulk beat Chilean goalkeeper Claudio Bravo only to have the goal disallowed by referee Howard Webb for a handball.

Despite having less possession of the ball, the Amazonians had more shots and better chances on goal that forced Bravo to make save after save to keep the score tied at one.

Still, it was Chile who in the final minutes of extra time made a whole countries’ heart collectively skip a beat.  Substitute Mauricio Pinilla struck a ball just outside of the Brazilian penalty box that beat a stretching Julio Cesar but crashed into the crossbar maintaining the score tied.

The penalty shootout was as dramatic as the 120 minutes that preceded it.  David Luiz, Marcelo and Neymar all scored for the Brazilians, while Marcelo Diaz and Charles Aranguiz scored for Chile.

Coming down to the fifth penalty kick Chilean Gonzalo Jara came up to the spot needing to score to keep his team alive.  Jara struck the ball into the post and just like that Chile’s World Cup came to an end.

Like Pinilla’s shot at the end of extra time, a matter of inches separated Jara and Chile from producing one of the bigger upsets in World Cup history.

For the fourth time in their history, Chile is eliminated from a World Cup by Brazil, who now advances into the quarter finals against the winner of the Uruguay and Colombia matchup.

Luis Gonzalez may be reached at [email protected]

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World Cup Recap: Brazil vs. Chile