Watch the highlights of goals and key plays as Brazil eliminates Mexico in the World Cup round of 16.

By Avi Creditor
July 02, 2018

Mexico will have to wait until at least 2022 to end its curse of the vaunted quinto partido.

Neymar scored and assisted on goals in the second half, and Brazil defeated Mexico 2-0 Monday in the last 16, dumping El Tri out in that round for the seventh straight World Cup. There will be no fifth game yet again for Mexico, which had opportunities in the opening 20 minutes of the match when it controlled play, only to lose out to the overall balance from Brazil.

It was Neymar's 51st-minute goal that broke a deadlock, after a well-worked, circuitous give-and-go with Willian resulted in a tap-in at the far post. Neymar turned provider in the 88th minute, sending in a curling cross from the left to the same post, where substitute Roberto Firmino tapped home for the insurance goal that finished off Mexico's hopes.

Brazil will face either Belgium or Japan in the quarterfinals as it continues its quest for a sixth title.

Mexico, with 39-year-old captain Rafa Marquez starting in the midfield, threatened early, when Andres Guardado sent in a dangerous cross from the left in the second minute. Brazil goalkeeper Alisson punched it away, but right to Hirving Lozano. His close-range chance was blocked by Miranda in the nick of time, though, preventing the shot from reaching its target.

Brazil's first chance came three minutes later from Neymar, who had the time and space to fire from 25 yards, only to hit it right at Guillermo Ochoa. The Mexico goalkeeper made an awkward save, parrying it to his left, before Mexico cleared the danger.

Mexico looked plenty comfortable as the half continued on, looking to create opportunities on both flanks through Carlos Vela, Guardado and Lozano. With star left back Marcelo out injured and Fagner a second-choice right back behind the injured and omitted Dani Alves, it was clear to see where Juan Carlos Osorio thought his side could find success.

Vela created more danger in the 22nd minute with a lovely touch and cut back to the center from the left side. He found Hector Herrera at the top of the box, and only desperation defending prevented the midfielder from getting a clean look at goal.

Brazil came to life two minutes later. Neymar skinned two defenders before firing a tight-angled shot from the left on goal, which Ochoa stopped by the near post. Mexico scrambled defensively to prevent any follow-up chances, but the sequence appeared to restore Brazil's intent.

On an ensuing free kick, Gabriel Jesus had a ball fall to him in the box, only to have his left-footed chance, which appeared to be going wide, blocked and flipped in the air by Hugo Ayala. The ball fell for Philippe Coutinho at the edge of the area, but the Barcelona star fired his rocket high of the post, as Brazil continued to ramp up the pressure in the Mexican end.

Gabriel Jesus had a chance saved in the 32nd minute off a lovely sequence, in which Paulinho dummied to allow the ball through to the left channel. Gabriel Jesus beat one defender in the box to create space, then fired from a left-sided angle, with Ochoa making the two-handed save.

Neymar lined up another chance in the 40th minute off a free kick from 30 yards after he was chopped down by Edson Alvarez. He put too much bend on it, though, hooking it over the wall but wide of the post, as things remained 0-0.

Brazil came out firing in the second half. Coutinho created space for a great opportunity from 15 yards, only for Ochoa to come up, again, with a strong two-handed save in the 48th minute.

Jesus Gallardo tried to change the momentum for Mexico off a Brazil corner kick that turned into a counterattack for El Tri. Gallardo opted for the blast from distance instead of playing it wide for Lozano, putting his 50th-minute chance high.

Mexico rued that missed opportunity a minute later. Neymar played the ball wide for Willian with a nifty back-heel pass, and the Chelsea winger made an excellent move down the left and crossed in front of goal back for Neymar. He stabbed it home with a sliding finish to make it 1-0.

It nearly backing 2-0 in the 59th minute, when Paulinho had a golden chance from in close, only for Ochoa to deny him.

Mexico's best chance to equalize came at the hour mark, after Raul Jimenez had come on to replace Chicharito, who appeared to ding his hamstring early in the match. Jimenez had a chance blocked, and it fell right for Vela, who was able to set himself up for a trademark left-footed curler. Alisson was able to tip it over the bar, though, to protect the lead.

On the other end, Willian forced Ochoa into another tough save, following a stepover with a powerful right-footed blast, that the Mexican goalkeeper was able to tip out for a corner.

Mexico appeared to catch a bit of a break in the 70th minute. With Neymar down on the sideline and play stopped, Miguel Layun stepped on the Brazilian's ankle with his studs. Neymar made a meal of it, writhing in pain, and VAR did not call for a red card to be shown, despite the dangerous play. Neymar's reputation for theatrics likely didn't help his cause in the situation, no matter the reality of the pain.

Brazil put the game on ice late. After a bad giveaway in the midfield, Neymar had space to carry down the left-hand side. His cross to the far post was deflected a bit by Ochoa, but right into the path of Firmino, who tapped home to make it 2-0.

Brazil held on from there, sealing the victory and sending Mexico out at a very familiar and painful hurdle.


Here were the lineups for both teams:


Here are the rosters for both sides:

BRAZIL

Goalkeepers: Alisson (Roma), Ederson (Man City), Cassio (Corinthians)

Defenders: Danilo (Man City), Fagner (Corinthians), Thiago Silva (PSG), Miranda (Inter), Marquinhos (PSG), Pedro Geromel (Gremio), Marcelo (Real Madrid), Filipe Luis (Atletico Madrid)

Midfielders: Casemiro (Real Madrid), Paulinho (Barcelona), Fernandinho (Man City), Renato Augusto (Beijing Guoan), Philippe Coutinho (Barcelona), Fred (Shakhtar), Willian (Chelsea)

Forwards: Neymar (PSG), Roberto Firmino (Liverpool), Gabriel Jesus (Man City), Douglas Costa (Juventus), Taison (Shakhtar)

Manager: Tite

MEXICO

Goalkeepers: Jesus Corona (Cruz Azul), Guillermo Ochoa (Standard Liege), Alfredo Talavera (Toluca)

Defenders: Edson Alvarez (America), Hugo Ayala (Tigres), Jesus Gallardo (Pumas), Hector Moreno (Real Sociedad), Miguel Layun (Sevilla), Carlos Salcedo (Eintracht Frankfurt)

Midfielders: Giovani dos Santos (LA Galaxy), Jonathan dos Santos (LA Galaxy), Marco Fabian (Eintracht Frankfurt), Andres Guardado (Real Betis), Erick Gutierrez (Pachuca), Hector Herrera (Porto), Rafa Marquez (Atlas)

Forwards: Javier Aquino (Tigres), Jesus Corona (Porto), Javier Hernandez (West Ham United), Hirving Lozano (PSV Eindhoven), Raul Jimenez (Benfica), Oribe Peralta (Club America), Carlos Vela (LAFC)

Manager: Juan Carlos Osorio

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