Neymar Beat Japan 1-0 In a Friendly Match To Score From a Penalty

Tokyo (AP) — Brazil beat Japan 1-0 in a friendly match on Monday, thanks to Neymar’s 77-minute penalty kick on a rainy night at Tokyo’s new National Stadium.

Neymar’s Brazilian national team’s 74th goal was three shy to match the record set by Pele. The Paris Saint-Germain striker also penalized two World Cup teams last week by defeating South Korea 5-1 as part of Verde Amarella’s Asian tour.

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Japan still can’t beat Brazil with a record of 13 games — 11 losses and 2 draws. Brazil also extended the winning streak of the match without losing to 13. The final defeat of Tite’s team dates back almost a year ago when they lost to Argentina in the Copa America final.

Defender Markinhos admitted that Brazil had a hard time winning a fierce victory.

“I expected a more difficult game. I think the last game performed better,” he said. “Early, some passes were inaccurate and there were some mistakes that gave Japan confidence … it was a tough test against a team ready for the World Cup.”

Pretending to win their sixth title, Brazil will face Cameroon, Switzerland and Serbia on the World Cup group stage in Qatar. Japan will face the winners of the intercontinental playoffs between Germany and Spain, and Costa Rica and New Zealand.

“At the World Cup, we may need to win 1-0 to move on to the next stage, which is what we did today,” says Marquinhos.

Tite said his team was “ready” than the team that lost in the World Cup quarterfinals four years ago. He took over the command of the team two years before the tournament in Russia, after Danga was dismissed in 2016.

“The previous cycle (2016-18) gave me an experience,” Tite said. “I don’t underestimate it. I didn’t expect to spend so much time with the national team.”

Tite wanted a warm-up against England and defending champion France prior to the World Cup, but it turned out to be impossible. The plan is to try to see them in September against the top 30 in the FIFA rankings.

Brazil monopolized ownership and created multiple scoring opportunities. Neymar wasted some on Japan’s goal.

Tite has made four changes from the team that defeated South Korea.

Goalkeeper Weverton, central defender Thiago Silva, left-back Alex Sandro and striker Richarlison all stood on the bench. Instead, Allison scored a goal, Edel Militao and Gierme appeared as defenders, and Vini Jr. attacked.

Lucas Paqueta hit the post in the same first minute, Fred finished woodworking, and Japanese goalkeeper Shuichi Gonda made a spectacular save 20 minutes before Rafinha’s point blank shot.

Neymar had the best chance in the middle of the first half, but Gonda jumped to his left to repel. Gonda blocked another shot shortly before the break, and Rafinha caressed the goal with a shot from a free kick.

Japan hinted at the risk with a cross from Junya Ito’s right side and put pressure on Alison in the early part of the second half without being able to push hard.

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