Neymar Sizzles as Brilliant Brazil March on

#WorldCupRussia2018 –

The Match Took me Down Memory Lane to 1994 Final

As Brazil are through to the quarter final with a convincing 2-0 win over Mexico, thanks to Neymar’s magical footwork and inspiration for the team, I think I can afford to go on a bit of nostalgia.

In 1994, the World Cup year, I was the Assistant Editor of the Singapore edition of the British football magazine, Shoot.

Baggio’s Wizardry: A Brazil fan, I was tilting towards Italy, thanks to Roberto Baggio’s wizardry.

The title match between the two went to penalties and I got into a neutral mood. But when Baggio ballooned his spot kick and handed Brazil the title, I dipped into sorrow as all the good run he had throughout the Cup had been nullified with a single, but crucial miss.

The match was over in the wee hours of the morning in Singapore, I wrote a quick editorial as the week’s edition of the magazine had to be sent for printing. The heading I gave for it was similar to the one for my blog yesterday: “Tiebreaker or Heartbreaker?”

Brazilian Samba: Neymar was brilliant today, scoring one goal, assisting with the second and nearly getting another, with his strike narrowly missing the nets.

Whether or not it was Brazilian samba, it was clever play from him when he got Brazil up 1-0 with an intelligent pass in the penalty area and getting the ball back for a memorable goal.

The match was appearing to be one with less infringements than what I had been seeing in the Cup. Just when I was beginning to see impressive on-field bonding between Brazilian and Mexican players, Neymar was brought down, leaving him screaming and rolling in anguish and obvious pain.

Fortunately, he recovered and was soon back playing. More fouls and yellow cards followed.

That left me disappointed with Mexico, a country I love having lived there about two decades ago. I am ready to consider it a one-off aberration.

G Joslin Vethakumar

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