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USA 0 – 2 Brazil: Young Samba stars shine in New Jersey

August 11th, 2010

Neymar, Alexandre Pato, Paulo Henrique Ganso, Brazil (Getty Images)

Bright future ahead for Menezes’ men…

Mano Menezes named an inexperienced, experimental lineup in his first match as Brazil coach, but his Selecao looked like a team that had been playing together for years.

The classic samba beat returned tonight as an inspired Brazil earned a 2-0 victory over the United States. In his international debut, Neymar headed in the opener, and Alexandre Pato added a second before half-time.

In addition to Neymar, playmaker Ganso and goalkeeper Victor earned their first caps for Brazil. For the United States, Omar Gonzalez wore his country’s shirt for the first time.

The United States looked the better team during the opening exchanges, and Landon Donovan had a penalty claim denied before Brazil found their rhythm. And find it they did. From the fifth minute onward, Brazil completely dominated the game.

Pato missed a gilt-edged chance and Andre Santos was denied by a fine save from Tim Howard before Neymar headed in Santos’ 29th minute cross. Three minutes later, Pato had put the ball into the net, but the goal was disallowed for a foul the Milan forward committed on Howard.

Brazil continued to dominate the game, using superior skill, as well as a numerical (3-2) advantage in central midfield to maintain possession and force the Americans to stay on their heels.

Repeatedly, the visitors would win the ball in midfield, burst forward, and have favorable numbers on the break. (more…)


Brazilians look at future prospects in US friendly

August 10th, 2010

Brazil coach Mano Menzes

New Brazil coach Mano brings back only four World Cup players for a Tuesday friendly against the United States, his debut in the job after taking over from Dunga.

Santos striker Robinho, AC Milan defender Thiago Silva, Barcelona defender Daniel Alves and Benfica midfielder Ramires will be joined by 10 new players as the South Americans look to the 2012 London Olympics and 2014 World Cup.

AC Milan forward Alexandre Pato, Santos playmaker Neymar, Liverpool midfielder Lucas and defenders Rafael da Silva of Manchester United and Marcelo of Real Madrid are among the newcomers being touted as the top of the next generation of superstar talent for the five-time World Cup champions.

The Netherlands ousted Brazil in last month’s World Cup quarter-finals, sparking Dunga’s exit and a call for more flair from the Brazilians. (more…)


British adventurer about to complete Amazon trek

August 9th, 2010

Ed Stafford is walking the length of the Amazon river Photo: KEITH DUCATEL

A former British army captain is about to finish the longest jungle trek in history after completing a 6,000 mile expedition along the Amazon River.

Ed Stafford, 34, is expected to arrive at Maruda Beach in Belem on the Atlantic coast of Brazil after 859 days hacking through some of the most difficult terrain in the world.

The former Afghanistan war veteran began his epic journey near the Pacific Ocean at Camana in Peru in April 2008 and had been expecting to complete the 4,000 mile journey in one year.

But huge detours caused by flooding more than doubled his schedule and added an extra 2,000 miles to his route.

The former Dorset and Devonshire Light Infantry Officer, who has used his walk to raise awareness of environmental issues and collect money for charity, said he was relieved it was finally almost over. (more…)


Brazil Hasn’t Seen So Much Snow in a Decade

August 8th, 2010

It’s something for the records book. For a second day running it snowed Wednesday in Southern Brazil. The same happened in twelve of Argentina’s 24 provinces including parts of Buenos Aires as a consequence of the polar front covering most of the continent’s southern cone with zero and below zero temperatures.

Light snow storms in Brazil were concentrated in areas of Rio Grande do Sul and Santa Catarina. Globo network aired snow flakes falling in early morning, cars covered with a thin white coating and some roads dangerously slippery because of ice.

According to meteorologist Estael Sias, Rio Grande do Sul had not seen so much snow since 2000. The cities of Bom Jesus, Cambará do Sul, Caxias do Sul, Crissiumal, Gramado, São José dos Ausentes, Vacaria and Lagoa Vermelha seemed scenes of an European city on winter. People even had a chance to build their snowmen.

In Argentina the phenomenon extended to Northern provinces, geographically sub-tropical while in the Patagonia and along the Andes snow reached over a meter deep, isolating villages and causing yet undisclosed losses to crops and livestock. (more…)


Brazil planning sober samba party with alcohol set to be banned for 2014 World Cup

August 8th, 2010

Sobering thoughts: There will be a party in Brazil - but will it may be a dry one

Brazil 2014 is set to be the first alcohol-free World Cup after organisers confirmed sales will be banned at games under anti-hooligan laws.

None of the 12 stadia which will host matches will be allowed to sell drinks because of violence which cost 42 lives in 10 years to 2008.

The ban was imposed in April 2008 by the Public Ministry, which represents Brazil’s magistrates.

World Cup organising committee director Rodrigo Paiva said a law change, which magistrates have pledged to fight, would be needed if stadia asked to sell alcohol.

State governments in Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo and Pernambuco, where games will be played, also have local rules stopping sales, and minimum jail terms for offences were added last week.

Budweiser has paid £32million to be an event partner, though their beer will still be advertised at stadia and sold at fan zones.

Despite the ban, trouble still occurs, and a fan died in February as 14 were shot when Sao Paulo and Palmeiras fans clashed.

A fan was reported to have had his hand blown off as he tried to detonate a home-made bomb at the game.

By Alistair Grant

http://www.dailymail.co.uk


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