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February 9, 2011
• Stade de France, Paris
Referee: W. Stark
K. Benzema 54'
90' + 4'
That's it from me, but make sure you check out all the post match analysis and reaction on Goal.com!
90' + 3'
That's it! France have won, and their recovery under Laurent Blanc continues! Brazil put up a good fight, but Hernanes' red card was too much of a blow for them to overcome.
90' + 2'
Oh... good run from Remy, but his low cross is too hard for Cabaye and scoots just by the far post.
90' + 1'
Two minutes of stoppage time to be played. A Hulk raid down the right wing is expertly arrested by Rami.
HULK!!! What a chance for Brazil. Sagna got the offside trap wrong, but Hulk's first touch was poor, allowing Lloris to race from his goal and save France.
Now France are really pressing the Brazilians. They're certainly keen to win this game. Elias goes off and is replaced by France-based Andre, who plays with Bordeaux.
Cabaye's first contribution is to foul Dani Alves, who brandishes an imaginary yellow card towards the referee. There's no booking for the midfielder though.
Gourcuff goes off to be replaced by Lille's Yohan Cabaye. Just a few minutes left now.
Hulk replaces Pato for Brazil, while Kevin Gameiro comes on for Benzema, who receives generous applause from the home fans.
Great probing from Dani Alves, but his dangerous raid was ended by a key interception from Mexes.
BENZEMA!! Lovely from the centre-forward! After beating two players, the Real Madrid man slipped at the crucial moment, meaning a promising move ended with a shot looping embarrassingly over the top. He deserved more though.
There's few signs of either side making many more changes. Brazil boss the ball, and France invite pressure by sitting deep in their own half. When the Selecao do break through, Mexes makes two more vital challenges.
Brazil are presently on course to lose their second successive fixture 1-0. They've got about eight minutes to recover the situation.
France temporarily get their control back on the game, but a slack pass from Gourcuff 30 yards out allows the Selecao to recover possession.
Oh... Pato caught just offside as he attempted to latch onto an Elias pass. The Milan man just lost his concentration a little there.
And suddenly Brazil inject some pace into proceedings! Andre Santos powers down the left, but his driven low cross eludes everyone!
For the first time this evening, this game is starting to feel like a friendly. The tempo has gone from the game temporarily.
The Stade de France crowd is whistling... the home fans want to see their side attack!
Again, the game's drifted into a scrappy phase. Brazil are tiptoeing back into the game, but they're not looking dangerous.
Oh... Great skill from Benzema on the left hand side. His cross is too hard for his team-mates and too angled to find the target. Julio Cesar looked worried though.
Les Bleus are happy to keep the ball, making Brazil chase hard and really exploiting their numerical advantage.
Lovely break from France, who show off their skills with a series of one-touch passes. Eric Abidal makes a rare foray down the left, but his cross is kicked clear by David Luiz.
Pato runs onto a long pass from David Luiz, setting up Brazil's best spell of play in quite some time. Mexes clears Dani Alves' cross.
Robinho the latest player to be replaced. On comes Sandro.
Off comes Jeremy Menez to be replaced by Loic Remy. Blanc's probably made this call in view of the winger's yellow card just a moment ago.
The game's become a bit scrappy in recent minutes. Diarra fouls Elias, who gives the Bordeaux midfielder some verbals in the aftermath. Moments later, France win a free kick.
Silly tackle from Menez on David Luiz. It was late from the Roma man, and it thoroughly deserved a booking.
Yellow Card Jérémy Menez
Oh... Andre Santos robbed Menez in the centre of the pass and offloaded to Robinho, whose pass is too heavy for Pato. Lloris gathers comfortably.
There's a booking for Robinho, presumably for dissent. The Milan man is supposed to be Brazil's captain, but that's not leading by example.
Brazil are still trying to press the French high up the field, but having been reduced in numbers, this ploy is no longer so effective.
Dani Alves' corner is whipped nicely into the box, but David Luiz can't get over it, meaning the ball flies over the top.
Les Bleus continue to play with real confidence, though Pato wins a corner for Brazil as the Selecao make a rare foray forward.
BENZEMA!!! Another chance for the French striker. This time he created the opportunity himself, cutting a big hole in the right channel, before striking low. Again Julio Cesar denies the former Lyon man.
Abou Diaby comes on for Yann M'Vila.
More French progress down the right. This time it's Gourcuff who benefits, but his cross is blocked away for a corner.
Renato Augusto is withdrawn and is replaced by Jadson. That's the first change of the night.
Brazil's best moment of the second half... Elias finds some room down the right, but his centre is too hard for Robinho.
Another dangerous free kick from France. The ball breaks kindly for Brazil. Julio Cesar holds onto the ball for a few seconds to allow the rocking Brazilians to take a breath.
BENZEMA!!! So close to 2-0 France. Again they cut Brazil open down the right. Sagna got a cross into the box, and it ultimately broke to Benzema, whose header from six yards is beaten away by Julio Cesar.
Goal Karim Benzema
GOOAAAALLL!!! Brazil's resistance is broken at last! This goal owes much to the efforts of Jeremy Menez, who got by a couple of defenders down the right to reach the byline. His low cross was tapped into an empty net by Benzema.
France continue to probe. Brazil are defending impressively, though.
Gourcuff is given plenty of room 25 yards out and takes aim at goal. His shot isn't hit completely purely, and Julio Cesar saves with ease.
M'Vila's not having the best of games, despite his undoubted potential. A very heavy touch leads to the breakdown of a promising attack, and Brazil end up threatening on the counter.
Benzema tries to sneak in behind of the Brazil defence to latch onto an M'Vila pass. The Real Madrid forward is flagged offside, but it was tight.
It's all France at the moment. Brazil are happy to sit back and soak up the pressure.
BENZEMA!! A deep cross from Malouda is badly missed by David Luiz. Benzema controls on his chest, but Thiago Silva gets across brilliantly to make the block.
France try to play a clever short corner, but things breakdown embarrassingly for les Bleus, with M'Vila's fresh air kick at the edge of the box very forgettable.
Brazil, despite being reduced to 10, are unchanged. France are on the attack, with Benzema doing well to win a corner kick immediately.
France get us underway in the second half.
That's half-time. It's been a bit of a see-saw half, though Brazil have had the better of it. However, the momentum is with France after Hernanes' red card for a crazy challenge on Karim Benzema. Stay tuned for what's sure to be an interesting second half.
45' + 1'
We're into the only minute of added time.
Julio Cesar brilliantly gathers Yoann Gourcuff's corner and as France attack again, Dani Alves does well to shut out Florent Malouda.
Another France corner, but the Brazilian's aren't too happy about the call. In truth, it looked a 50-50 decision.
France have the momentum. Menez delivers a dangerous cross from the right, which Julio Cesar does brilliantly to touch away.
Benzema's off to get more treatement, but it's still his thigh that's causing concern. In the meantime, Malouda has a cross steered behind by Andre Santos.
RED CARD HERNANES! Remember Nigel de Jong's challenge on Xabi Alonso in the World Cup final? Well, this is a replica, on Hernanes has clattered Benzema. Wolfgang Stark shows no hesitation and orders the midfielder off. That was a terrible challenge.
Red Card Hernanes
Good fight from Menez, whose industry in attack wins France possession. Sagna wastes it on the right, but Mexes, once again, shuts out Pato.
Another free kick for France, this time won by Malouda well inside the Brazilian half. Les Bleus are content to go short, but the move breaks down too easily.
Menez has switched to the left, and immediately he draws a free kick from Dani Alves. Gourcuff's swinging ball is gathered low at the near post by Julio Cesar... so nearly a good ball in from the playmaker!
ROBINHO!!! Good chance once again for Brazil, but after gathering the ball at the edge of the box he fired over the top. There were other options for him too...
Oh... nearly a wonderful diagonal pass from Dani Alves to Pato. Rami just misjudges the header when faced with the looping pass, but the Milan man didn't gamble, which allowed the ball to escape him.
Poor from Benzema, who fires a simple pass straight at Andre Santos. It's been a tough night for the ex-Lyon man, who's gone off the field to receive treatment on a thigh problem.
Brazil's runners from the centre of the park are posing real problems for France. Elias tried to slip Robinho through on goal, but his pass was too firm.
Fine defending from Philippe Mexes, who blocked Andre Santos' raid into the box. The Brazilian left-back got forward excellently there.
Menez goes to ground spectacularly, but referee Wolfgang Stark reads the Roma man's dive accurately. No free kick.
DIARRA! Oh... France go close! Malouda's free kick is clipped just over the top by a brave Diarra header. Julio Cesar didn't appear to be near that.
A late challenge on Benzema by David Luiz means France have free kick 35 yards from goal. The Brazilian is a little unlucky to concede that. Good attacking chance for France though.
France lucky there! Lloris receives a back pass he certainly didn't want and kicked the ball straight out to a Brazilian. Robinho is foolishly caught offside in the ensuing break.
France are defending well for now. Rami looks pretty solid in defence, while Alou Diarra made a thumping challenge on Hernanes a moment ago.
M'Vila injects some life into the midfield, rumbling through a couple of challenges before off-loading to Benzema, whose fouled in the middle of the park. France don't make use of the free kick though.
While the Selecao are starting to impose themselves on this game, France are looking more disjointed. Karim Benzema is starting to look isolate in attack, and Gourcuff's influence has really waned.
Brazil try a clever training ground move, involving three players dummying a shot. France read their guests' intentions and mop up the danger well.
It's encouraging to see both teams getting forward in numbers, but Brazil are particularly adventurous. Dani Alves draws a foul from Alou Diarra. It's another free kick almost central, 30 yards out.
David Luiz shows strength and skill not only to rob Malouda, but to carry the ball forward 30 yards to the halfway line. Impressive from the Chelsea man.
Both teams are sporting new strips tonight, with the Brazilians' looking particularly retro. France are wearing a collarless deep blue number.
France coach Laurent Blanc is waving his arms frantically on the sidelines. He's not pleased with something! Brazil have come back into the game in the last few minutes.
France fend off the corner once again, but Brazil continue to come forward, Mexes reacts quickly to clear a promising attack.
Free kick chance here. Brazil benefited from an error made by Gourcuff and Rami was forced to foul Pato. Dani Alves eyes this up from at least 30 yards out, pretty central... it clips the wall and goes out for a corner.
Pato tries to get the better of Mexes, but the Roma defender stands tall and makes a fine challenge.
A fair challenge from Dani Alves on Malouda leaves the Chelsea man prone. The ball goes out of play, but the Frenchman will be fine.
Powerful run from Brazil full-back Andre Santos down the left. Sagna did well not only to rob his opponent, but to deny the Selecao a corner.
PATO! Oh... Brazil's best effort so far. Lucas wins possession in the centre of the field and quickly passes to the Milan star. From the left corner of the box, his right-footed shot bent just over the top.
France have men behind the ball in numbers when Brazil are in possession, and they need them all to rebuff Pato, whose run through a pack of players at the edge of the box comes to a stuttering end.
The French crowd have to be pleased with their side's performance so far. More quick one-touch passing down the right creates an opening, but Menez passes behind Gourcuff.
Brazil nearly respond in kind, but Elias' pass to Pato is heavy, allowing Lloris to gather.
BENZEMA!!! The first real sight of goal! Lovely one-touch play from les Bleus, with a brilliant no-look pass from Gourcuff releasing the Real Madrid striker. From the edge of the box, he drove wide of Julio Cesar's right hand post.
Any time France are scrappy in the centre of the park, Brazil are all over them. Rami has to show some smart footwork to prevent Renato Augusto pinching the ball from him.
Lovely close control from Karim Benzema, but his pass out left towards Malouda is intercepted by the heel of Dani Alves.
Yann M'Vila breaks up play superbly for France and feeds the ball right to Gourcuff. His cross is cleared for a corner, les Bleus' first.
Malouda attempts a shot from Dani Alves distance, but his effort is badly scuffed wide. After a poor start, it's les Bleus now bossing play.
Les Bleus string their first dangerous serious of passes together, charging down the left. Malouda is bullied off the ball at the edge of the box. What a start to this game!
France are really hanging on here. Dani Alves has a centre headed clear by Rami, though when Lucas delivers, Lloris clutches confidently.
Brazil are pressing France very high up the park, and the hosts don't like it. Rami is forced into an error and fouls Robinho. Hernanes' free kick is headed away by the Lille centre-back. Corner Brazil.
Dani Alves has a shot from 30 yards that bounces in front of Hugo Lloris. The goalkeeper fumbles, but holds at the second attempt.
There's a promising tempo to the start of this match, but it's all been Brazil so far. France try to muscle out some possession, but the Selecao keep possession superbly.
And Brazil kick us off, wearing their traditional yellow strips.
The Stade de France looks awesome tonight. Red, white and blue simply floods the stadium, and it's clear the fans are up for this game.
There's about five minutes to kick-off, and the teams are readying themselves to come out.
And Brazil: Julio Cesar; Daniel Alves, Thiago Silva, David Luiz, Andre Santos; Elias, Lucas, Hernanes; Renato Augusto, Pato, Robinho (cap)
Here's the France XI: Lloris; Sagna, Rami, Mexes, Abidal; M'Vila, A.Diarra (cap); Menez, Gourcuff, Malouda; Benzema
Good evening, and welcome to Paris, where France meet Brazil in a rematch of the 1998 World Cup final, which les Bleus famously won 3-0. Follow all the action LIVE, right here on Goal.com.
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