Philippe Coutinho stepped up for Brazil by scoring twice to lead Brazil to a win over Bolivia in the opening match of the Copa America.
SAO PAULO — Philippe Coutinho helped Brazil overcome the absence of Neymar by scoring twice in Brazil's 3-0 win over Bolivia in the opening match of the Copa America on Friday.
Coutinho converted a penalty kick awarded by video review in the 50th minute and headed in a cross by Roberto Firmino in the 53rd, helping the hosts overcome a lackluster first half that prompted jeers by the local crowd at halftime.
Substitute Everton also scored in the second half to help ignite the fans at the Morumbi Stadium, keeping Brazil on track for its first South American title since 2007.
Brazil's debut came with Neymar still attracting most of the attention even though he is not playing in the tournament because of an ankle injury. Neymar on Thursday appeared at a police station amid a media frenzy to answer questions about a rape allegation from a Brazilian woman who visited him in Paris. He has denied wrongdoing.