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Brazil beat Venezuela to go top of South American group

photo by AP photo

Brazil\'s players celebrate after teammate Willian scoring the second goal against Venezuela during a 2018 World Cup qualifying soccer match in Merida, Venezuela on Tuesday.

By Agency
14th-Oct-2016       
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Brazil went top of the South American World Cup qualifying group on Tuesday with a 2-0 win over Venezuela in a match played in torrential rain and halted for almost half an hour when the floodlights failed in Merida.
The five-time World Cup winners, who were without suspended Barcelona striker Neymar, took just eight minutes to open the scoring with a goal that mixed comedy and beauty.
Venezuela goalkeeper Daniel Hernandez tried to pass the ball to his centre half 30 yards from goal only for Gabriel Jesus to pounce on the woeful attempt and lift the ball over the keeper from 20 metres with the loveliest of chips.
Brazil controlled the game against a team that had not won in their nine previous qualifiers and they got a second their play deserved after 53 minutes when Willian snuck in at the back post to finish off a low cross from Renato Augusto.
Venezuela improved slightly as the game progressed but although Alejandro Guerra came close after an hour and Alisson saved well from Salomon Rondon with minutes to go, they never looked like halting the progress of their dominant rivals.
The only major disruption to the Brazilian march to victory came when the lights in the Metropolitano stadium went out after 73 minutes.

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