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August 16, 2012
• Råsundastadion, Solna
Referee: V. Kassai
• Attendance: 32781
Leandro Damião 32'
Alexandre Pato 84', 86'
Thanks for joining us here on Goal.com. I've been Tom Woods - and I am officially pumped for the new season. Catch up soon.
Final whistle, and Pele is smiling. He has seen his countrymen absolutely waltz through this game, at times toying with their opponents and running out comfortable 3-0 winners. The Rasunda holds many fond Swedish memories, but this is not one of them.
90' + 1'
We're into the first of two added minutes here. Sweden hitting aimless balls out of play. It's been disappointing stuff from the home side, as good as Brazil have been.
Big chance for Sweden there. Samuel Holmen is played in by Toivonen, but blasts his shot straight into the face of Gabriel. Thiago SIlva clears away, and Brazil maintain their clean sheet.
Paulinho is coming off for Brazil. Tottenham's Sandro replaces him.
Yellow Card Pontus Wernbloom
Penalty Goal Alexandre Pato
GOAL BRAZIL! Smashed home by Pato, straight down the middle, although he fell over making contact. 3-0 Brazil.
PENALTY! Pato is brought down AGAIN by Wernbloom, and Brazil have a penalty. The same player to take...
Assist Daniel Alves
Goal Alexandre Pato
GOAL BRAZIL! Not sure what happened there. Dani Alves hits a shot, slips, and the ball bobbles up into the air. The defence stops, thinking Pato is offside, and the Milan striker just nips in to stab the ball home. Sweden look perplexed, but they are deservedly 2-0 down.
Brazil make another change, with Neymar replaced by Lucas Moura. He of the many thousand transfer rumours.
And still the wave continues, to enormous cheers. I wonder if they're going to carry on until full-time.
OK this is getting surreal now. The match is at virtually walking pace, but the noise going round the stadium now is deafening. Bye bye Rasunda, we'll miss you.
Hulk smashes the kick into the wall. There is a Mexican wave going round the Rasunda. Something for the home fans to cheer at least.
Pontus Wernbloom has, yet again, hacked Neymar to the floor. How has the CSKA man not been booked? Another free-kick for Brazil.
Sitter! Hysen pulls a great ball across goal and Toivonen has GOT to hit the target from 15 yards. But the PSV man skews his side-foot shot horribly wide. Can't imagine Sweden getting another chance like that.
Seriously, bringing on a player like Hulk with 15 minutes to go. It's just unfair.
Brazil make their first changes of the night. Three of them. First, David Luiz comes off for Vasco's Dede, Alexandre Pato is on for Damiao, and Oscar comes off to be replaced by Hulk. No let up for the Sweden defence then.
Hysen is quickly given a chance to prove me wrong as he chases a long ball from Toivonen, but David Luiz sprints across to clear easily.
Another change for Sweden. Tobias Hysen is on for Marcus Berg. Let's see what that does for the Swedish attack. I reckon not much.
Alex Sandro steps over it... and Neymar curls it wide. Ah well.
Oscar is scythed down on the edge of the box, just as he and Ramires looked set to release Neymar. Great chance here...
Another pearler from Damiao, who drives forward to the edge of the box before sending another stunning strike just over the top. It's a joy to watch this front line in action.
WOOSH. That was delish. Damiao turns 30 yards from goal, and with a shrug of the shoulders, pings one at the top corner with the outside of his boot. Inches wide, I tell ye. And his teammates are asking why he didn't pass. I ask you.
What a pleasure it is to watch this Brazil side stroke the ball around. At this rate, those Swedish subs will do well to get a kick tonight.
Christian Wilhelmsson is coming off for Sweden, and will be replaced by Fulham's Alexander Kacaniklic, making his debut tonight. Rasmus Elm, who has been poor tonight, is off for Anders Svensson.
Oh this is glorious. Neymar and Oscar flick passes this way and that, and Brazil cascade like water through the Sweden defence. They play one pass too many at the end of the move, and Leandro Damiao is crowded out on the six-yard line.
Oscar breaks forward again, and is tripped by Samuel Holmen. This time, Dani Alves chooses not to shoot, and Brazil are back to playing it amongst themselves.
An hour gone, and still no subs. Odd for a friendly, that.
For you Chelsea fans, it's fair to say that Oscar has been quiet tonight. He nearly remedies that with a curling effort from 25 yards, but it's just over the top from the no.10.
Neymar brings a touch of carnival to proceedings with an exquisite back-heel, but annoying for Alex Sandro, he is offside as the ball is played. Ah well, was still nice to see.
...thumped well over the bar by the Barca defender.
Neymar has been shoved to the floor again by Sweden. This time Granqvist is the offender. Another chance for Dani Alves to shoot...
Close! Neymar whips in the free-kick, and Paulinho flashes a header right across the face of goal, and Leandro Damiao is inches away from making it 2-0.
Christian Wilhelmsson attempts to put an end to that by kicking Neymar. Unsurprisingly, the referee isn't going to allow it.
The FIFA rankings are hardly a respected publication, but I should say, for the record, that Brazil are definitely not the 13th best side in the world. Even in second gear, as they are tonight, they are making mincemeat of the Swedes.
Neymar powers forward, and the Sweden defence back off, which is never a good plan. But the forward makes a mess of his toe-poked finish, which rolls well wide. He looks positively bemused with himself.
You might say, that was just like watching Brazil. Sorry.
Andreas Granqvist just executed a perfect Cruyff turn. I had to watch that again to convince myself it was real.
Sweden still haven't found their form yet, as Larsson overhits a pass and then Elm turns in the worst cross you will ever see, which trickles feebly towards the first defender.
There's a statement of intent from Dani Alves, who swings his right foot from 30 yards and forces Andreas Isaksson to punch over the top. Good goalkeeping. Brazil waste the corner.
At fully 8 minutes past the hour, Brazil re-join the field and we are back underway.
Goodness me, I was starting to think the player's weren't coming back at all. But finally, the Swedes emerge onto the field. Here comes part two.
And there goes the whistle. Brazilian dominance almost all of the time, but the Selecao only have Damiao's goal to show for it. It would be 2-0 if the linesman was doing his job, but there you go. Those Swedish chances just now point to a more competitive second half. We hope. Stay tuned for the final 45 minutes in the Rasunda's history.
After those two minutes of Swedish excitement, we are back to Brazilian keep-ball. Expect things to stay the same until half-time.
What a drive from Andreas Granqvist! The Genoa man hits a delightful volley from 30 yards, and the ball takes a wicked deflection just in front of Gabriel. It drops just wide, but oh how we wanted to see that in the bottom corner.
Great play from Sweden! Superb passing move from Toivonen and Berg, but the latter can't quite poke his shot beyond Gabriel, who makes a sprawling save.
So we're edging towards half-time, and I'll wager we may see a few changes at the break. A few players are feeling their hamstrings gingerley here, and will have the new club season in mind.
Yellow Card Thiago Silva
And after all that, Seb Larsson overhits the first free-kick off his life. The ball sails hopelessly over the heads of his teammates and out of play. Rubbish.
Another booking here, as Thiago Silva brings down Marcus Berg on the corner of the area. The Hamburg player had done well to hold the ball up there.
Man alive, that is another superb delivery fro Seb Larsson. Nobody on the end of it, but you still have to admire the ball in.
Paulinho gives away another dangerous free-kick to Sweden...
He's OK everyone. He's OK. Transfer deadline day rumours remain intact.
Leandro Damiao is down here, looked like he got a kick on the knee. Every European coach holds their breath.
But Sweden should score there! Toivonen arrives to meet a flick-on, but his contact is DREADFUL and the ball bobbles wide. Shame.
Utterly deserved that. I know it's Brazil and everything, but Sweden have offered nothing here.
Assist Neymar Jr.
Goal Leandro Damião
GOAL BRAZIL! This one counts. The corner is taken short, Neymar clips in a peach of a cross, and rising to meet it is Leandro Damiao. 1-0, and it's just like watching Brazil.
Neymar has really woken up, and is beating men at will. Brazil have a corner following another last minute tackle.
And Brazil nearly score! After winning back possession, Neymar breaks into the area, pulls the ball across... and nobody is able to meet his driven cross. Thiago Silva had an open goal there if he had timed his run better. But then he is a centre back.
Neymar skins too men on the right wing, and a diving header from Wernbloom concedes another corner. Sweden break, and lose the ball.
Pele, in the stands, is throwing all sorts of hand gestures towards the pitch. He's a damn sight more animated than a lot of the players out there, I can tell you.
Safari... to Wilhelmsson... tackled by Dani Alves. Brazil keep the ball. That's the match in a snapshot there folks.
CLOSE! The Barca man sends a skidding drive towards goal, and for my money, Andreas Isaksson was beaten there. The ball is just wide of the far post however, and Sweden escape again.
Pontus Wernbloom concedes a needless foul 30 yards out, and Dani Alves' eyes light up...
Honestly, I don't think Sweden have strung more than two passes together tonight. Brazil are pressing expertly, restricting their opponents to aimless long balls forward. Matter of time before Brazil score, surely...
Nice work from Christian Wilhelmsson, who troubles David Luiz for pace before being tackled by Thiago Silva just inside the area. The ball runs away, everyone expects a corner, but the referee gives a goal kick.
Well at least that gave the crowd an excuse to make some noise. It's eerily quiet inside the Rasunda tonight. Like it's already become a ghost town.
GOAL BRAZIL! Oh, no, hang on, it isn't. The forward is perfectly positioned to tap home after Damiao's shot comes back off the post, but is flagged offside. Replays show, he definitely wasn't.
What. Was. That. Sweden cause a murmur from the crowd as they break forward all of a sudden, but the ball from Rasmus Elm is dreadfully overhit, and Gabriel can cover easily. The murmer turns to a sigh. Then silence.
OK that's just ridiculous. It's a terrific free-kick from Larsson, but Brazil punt clear and Ramires and Neymar cause absolute havoc on the break. The Santos man wins an almost identical free-kick, about 6 seconds after conceding one at the other end.
Hold on, whats this? A free-kick to Sweden, for a foul by Paulinho. Genuine chance this...
That was a sheer delight from Leandro Damiao. He makes an absolute mug of Mikael Lustig with a nutmeg, and Andreas Granqvist has to come across quickly to hack clear. What a prospect this young striker looks. Who'd have thought? A young Brazilian striker looking world-class.
Seb Larsson is going into the referee's book here, for a totally needless barge on Oscar. Nobody told him it was a friendly.
This is 100% Brazil people. One. Hundred. Per. Cent. I'm not sure Sweden have had the ball for more than a couple of seconds. Max.
Yellow Card Sebastian Larsson
There goes Ramires again, who picks out Dani Alves and moves into a threatening position. But the Barca man overhits his pass and the ball rolls quietly out of play.
...ah. Over the bar. Oh well.
Free-kick to Brazil. Dani Alves fancies this...
Ramires looks Brazil's best prospect so far tonight, the Chelsea man seeing plenty of the ball on the right wing. Nothing of the more glamorous Neymar/Oscar/Damiao triangle though.
First corner of the game, as Ramires skips down the right and is tackled by Samuel Holmen. Easily cleared by Sweden.
...and Sweden are not doing a whole lot of pressing. A long ball is won by Thiago Silva at the back, and the defence is now stroking it around with consummate ease.
OK, football time. Sweden kick off and we're underway.
Pele has just placed the ball in the centre circle. I think it's time...
I should add that Brazil's shirt is a replica of their kit from the aforementioned 1958 World Cup final. Another 5-2 on the cards? We can only hope.
There's a lovely shot of Zlatan Ibrahimovic watching from the sidelines. Man, does he look glorious.
Brazil, as you might imagine, are in their changed strip of blue and gold for this one. The Swedes in the traditional yellow. The home crowd is currently belting out the national anthem. Almost time for kick-off.
The teams are on their way out. Predictions? Keep those comments coming via @woodstome on Twitter.
Oh, and there was that defeat by Mexico in the Olympics. Quite a lot of points for Brazil to prove tonight really.
There is, of course, another incentive for Brazil to do well here. Menezes’ side have slipped to 13th in the latest FIFA rankings, their lowest ever position. Now, nobody is going to suggest that this makes them a worse side than Greece, Denmark, England etc, but sitting outside of the world’s top ten is still going to hurt. As hosts of the 2014 World Cup, there will be no qualifiers to play over the next two years, which makes friendly matches such as these an important chance to boost their scores.
BRAZIL (4-2-3-1): Gabriel; Alves, David Luiz, Thiago Silva, Alex Sandro; Paulinho, Romulo; Ramires, Oscar, Neymar; Leandro Damiao
SWEDEN (4-2-3-1): Isaksson; Lustig, Granqvist, Olsson, Safari; Elm, Holmen; Larsson, Toivonen, Wilhelmsson; Berg
Brazil, as ever, have a team absolutely bursting with talent. You know what, I’m not even going to say any more. Just look at the names here; you know you’re in for a treat.
Here’s your TEAM NEWS for tonight’s encounter. First the Swedes, who have turned out a strong first eleven for their glamorous opponents. However, the big news is that Zlatan Ibrahimovic is not fit to start, so Marcus Berg will occupy the attack along with PSV’s Ola Toivonen.
How about that for a storyline ey? To mark the occasion, several members of the 1958 Sweden and Brazil squads, including a certain Mr Pele, have been invited to attend this match. The legendary striker will have fond memories of this place; I’d wager the Swedes would love to spoil those just a bit.
Anyone around in 1958? If you were, you’ll know that Brazil’s football side was virtually unknown, a relative speck on the international scene. Until, that is, they met Sweden in the World Cup final at tonight’s venue, the Rasunda. With that 5-2 victory, the Selecao had arrived, and the rest is history. Tonight’s game is not only a rematch of that final, but also the last match to be played in the famous stadium before it is demolished.
As ever, we want to hear your thoughts on tonight’s action. Hit me on Twitter via @woodstome, and I’ll get your comments up on the feed.
Good evening dear friends. Who’s ready for some football? The new club season is nearly upon us, and what better way to whet the appetite than a high profile international friendly. Welcome to Goal.com’s LIVE commentary of Sweden – Brazil. I’m Tom Woods. You’re more than welcome.
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