Photo: Brazil celebrates David Luiz's goal against Chile (Getty Images)
The business end of the World cup got underway on Saturday with host nation and one the favourites, Brazil and "Dark Horse" Chile which was an all South American match up . The game had all the hype and excitement leading up to the kick-off as many expected the Brazilians to find their "SAMBA" rhythm and the Chilean's to bring their usual fluent and flamboyant attacking style.
In the first 10 minutes of the game the Brazilians looked to be focused and ready to show the world that they are indeed worthy to be among the favourites. Star defender David Luiz gave the millions of Brazil supporters around the world something to cheer about and after he got the slightest of touches to put the host in front and predictions of high score in favour of Brazil could be heard ringing out.
However, the Chilean's were not phased by the noise and the crowd and sloppy defending led to the ever present, ever dangerous Alexis Sanchez silencing everyone in the 37th minute of play. The Brazilians never really looked a threat against the Chile defence and the half ended 1-1. There were a couple runs made by Neymar and Hulk and Neymar felt the full brunt of the Chile defenders.
In the second half, many waited for the Samba style which never came and the fans had little to cheer about until Hulk broke through off a chipped pass and slotted it into the net. The goal was however disallowed by the referee Howard Webb and Hulk was promptly yellow carded. Subsequent replays showed however, that the ball was not handled and the goal should have stood. The Brazilians never really looked like they recovered from that incident as they never had any form of attacking style and at one point couldn't even complete three passes.
The men from Chile on the other hand always looked to be the more likely to score and kept on pressuring the Brazil defenders with every chance they got. It almost paid off in stoppage time as a shot came rattling off Julio Ceaser's cross bar and left the Brazilians fans breathing a sigh of relief.
The game then went to extra time which again was very nerve racking for many as Chile pushed the Brazilians all the way and the Brazilians seemed at one point fighting for their lives and literally fighting for their own existence in the Word Cup. Then when referee Howard Webb finally blew the whistle which signaled the end of the game and the start of the dreadful penalty kicks many had belly aches instantly and many couldn't even bear to watch.
The penalty shootout started out extremely well for Brazil as Cesar saved the first two efforts from Chile. Brazil led then Willian missed giving Chile a life line which they took and came level at 2-2 on penalties. Hulk missed the penultimate kick for Brazil and it was Neymar who put Brazil back into the lead. The last kicker for Chile stepped up and as lady luck would have it the ball flew past Cesar then it hit the inside of the post and rebounded back into play to send Brazil through.
The question must then be, if a team can play so horrible and awful as the Brazilians did and still manage to go through, is it just luck which will run out come the next round, or it is it the defiance of physics which is DESTINY????????????????????????