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London 2012 Olympics

Late goals spur Brazil rout of Cameroon

Marta of Brazil

Brazil only needed seven minutes to score its opening goal of their Olympic tournament and to seal their 5-0 win against an outmatched Cameroon, a team that held up relatively well under the constant pressure. The scoreline doesn’t accurately represent the defensive effort that Cameroon used to keep Brazil frustrated for a
large portion of the match.

The floodgates opened for Brazil in the last 20 minutes, primarily thanks to the efforts of Cristiane, who came in at the start of the second half. Brazil didn’t have quite the same flair it’s known for, suggesting that there are still some kinks to be worked out before the conclusion of the group stages. As Cameroon tired during the game’s waning moments, Brazil was finally able to capitalize on a chance in regular play. Until the 80th minute, the three goals scored had all been results of set plays.

Francielle scored first for Brazil in the seventh minute off a free kick, which was followed in the 10th minute by a goal from Renata Costa from a corner kick. They wouldn’t see the back of the net again until the 72nd minute when Marta was taken down in the box by Bebey Beyene. Marta calmly slotted the ball past Ngo Ndom with her left foot despite the fact that the Cameroon `keeper had guessed correctly. In the 80th minute, Ngo Ndom was finally beaten in open play by Cristiane for Brazil’s fourth goal.

As the match went on, both teams turned to physicality to gain the upper hand. Cameroon’s Christine Manie had the only card in the first half early at the sixth minute, but then the two teams traded yellow cards in the second half, with one awarded to Jeannette Yango of Cameroon and then one to Brazil’s Formiga within roughly 10 minutes. The play turned sloppy toward the end of the game, with Brazil putting almost constant pressure on Cameroon. Brazil’s final goal came in the 88th minute after Cristiane cruised through a tired Cameroon defense to the end line and crossed for a ready and waiting Marta.

While the scoreline suggests a 5-0 drubbing, Brazil will be certainly have plenty of things to work on before they move to the next stage of the Olympic tournament. There were no indications of the status of the
Brazilian defense, but it took a surprising amount of time for the Brazilian offense to finish successfully. While Cameroon pushed itself to play up to Brazil’s level for at least 45 to 60 minutes of the game, Brazil has to have some level of concern that their level of play is not quite ready for the challenges ahead.


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