Belfast Telegraph

Brazil ready to rule the World again: Neymar


Neymar insisted five-time champions Brazil are dreaming of winning the World Cup again as they arrived in Russia yesterday.

The Paris St Germain forward scored his 55th international goal during the 3-0 win over Austria on Sunday to go level with Romario and sit joint-third in Brazil's all-time scoring charts.

Gabriel Jesus and Philippe Coutinho also netted in a comfortable victory ahead of Brazil's opening World Cup game against Switzerland on Sunday.

"You have to trust, you dream," he said. "You can talk, you're Brazilian and you can dream; we're dreaming more and more. Dreaming is not forbidden."

Brazil also face Costa Rica and Serbia in Group E in Russia as they look to hit back from their shock 7-1 semi-final defeat to Germany on home soil four years ago.

Manchester City striker Jesus also insisted Tite's side are ready for the tournament.

"All the games before the World Cup were important to reach this level of performance," Jesus, who now has 10 international goals, added.

"Austria had quality and we knew it would not be easy. Not only did the attack go well, the group went very well."

Brazil had spent 10 days preparing at Tottenham's training ground and beat Croatia 2-0 in Liverpool last week before Sunday's victory.

Jesus opened the scoring nine minutes before the break, Neymar struck just after the hour and Coutinho wrapped the victory up minutes later.

Coutinho said: "The game was important to us. It was the last game of preparation before the World Cup. We deserved the victory, we played very well.

"That gives you confidence. I always try to be prepared to play where the coach needs me and contribute in the best way possible."

Neymar is now level with Romario and behind only Ronaldo (62) and Pele (77) in Brazil's all-time record scoring charts.

He joked about Austria's rough approach.

"We got ready for the UFC, but it was good," he added. "Everyone was unharmed."

Belfast Telegraph

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