Thiago Silva: Media furore denied Brazil a penalty

The Selecao captain believes his side deserved a spot-kick when Marcelo went down in the box but says scrutiny following decisions in the Croatia game influenced the referee
By Robin Bairner at the Estadio Castelao

Thiago Silva claims Brazil should have had a penalty against Mexico on Tuesday but says officials were reluctant to court further controversy.

The hosts played out a 0-0 draw with their Group A opponents in Fortaleza, with Mexican goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa delivering a man-of-the-match display, but the Selecao felt aggrieved when Marcelo went down in the box under a challenge from Raul Jimenez only for the referee to remain unmoved.

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Brazil benefited from a controversial penalty decision in their opening game when Croatia defender Dejan Lovren was adjudged to have brought down Fred during the 3-1 win, and Thiago Silva believes the ongoing questioning of that decision was enough to prevent his side from earning another spot-kick.

"Last match, as soon as I showed up, the first question I was asked was about the referee," the Brazil captain told reporters.

"Today, that same question only came after 10 others. Against Croatia everybody was talking about the penalty, but today, from where I was, from the back, I saw that it was a penalty [against Marcelo].

"But I don't like to talk about those things. However, it's good that you guys mention it a little bit, because if you think about it, the repercussions of Fred's penalty might have influenced today.

"I have no doubts about that. If it hadn't been spoken about so loudly, maybe today we would've had a penalty."

Despite the draw, the Paris Saint-Germain defender feels his team are steadily improving and sees positive signs regarding their prospects in the tournament.

"I think we did better [than against Croatia]," he continued.

"We improve a little in some aspect every match. I believe we took a big step today, but when you don't get the result, even with the evolution you present, people might just doubt what I'm saying.

"I think the team performed very well today, especially in moments when we were being pressured. We kept our cool. But the most important thing is that you understand that your team is going through a rough patch, so everybody needs to get back and help defend. That's what happened today."

Brazil next face Cameroon in Group A on June 23.