Doha, Dec 6 (UNI): Five-time champions Brazil scored four first-half goals as they advanced to the FIFA World Cup quarterfinals with an impressive 4-1 victory over South Korea here on Monday.
Vinicius Junior put Brazil ahead with a cool finish and Neymar doubled the lead from the penalty spot. Richarlison and Lucas Paqueta extended the advantage before substitute Paik Seungho struck late for South Korea.
Brazil will meet Croatia at Education City stadium on Friday (Dec. 9) with a semifinal berth at stake.
South Korea, who were hoping to reach the quarterfinals for the first time since 2002, are eliminated from the tournament.
It took just seven minutes for Brazil to take the lead as Raphinha caught Kim Jinsu napping with a dashing run to the right byline before his cross bypassed Neymar and fell to Vinicius. The Real Madrid forward took one touch before calmly stroking his shot into the top far corner.
Kim Moonhwan then clipped Richarlison with a stray boot and referee Clement Turpin pointed to the spot after consulting the video assistant referee. Neymar sent goalkeeper Kim Seunggyu the wrong way before rolling his spot-kick into the bottom right corner.
Hwang Heechan went close to scoring for South Korea in the 16th minute with a dipping 25-yard drive that Alisson palmed away with his right hand.
But it was a rare moment of discomfort for Brazil’s defense. The South American giants were at their flamboyant best and their third goal will likely be remembered as one of the tournament’s best.
Richarlison showed sublime control by balancing the ball on his head before a slick exchange between Marquinhos and Thiago Silva. The latter then filtered though a perfectly weighted pass to the onrushing Richarlison, who sent a clinical finish past Kim Seunggyu.
Brazil were in an insatiable mood and at times looked like they were toying with their flummoxed opponents.