Neymar, Brazil roll aside Japan with video help
Lille: Neymar scored a penalty and missed another as Brazil signalled their intent ahead of next year’s World Cup by outclassing Japan 3-1 in Friday’s international friendly.
The Paris Saint-Germain star rolled in a 10th-minute spot-kick following consultation with the video assistant referee, although Neymar saw a second penalty saved shortly after by Eiji Kawashima. Marcelo rifled in a magnificent second as Brazil doubled their lead on 17 minutes, with Manchester City’s Gabriel Jesus rounding off a clinical counter-attack before half-time to make it 3-0.
Tomoaki Makino nodded in a consolation from a corner on 62 minutes but Japan remain winless against Brazil after losing for the 10th time in 12 meetings.
Neymar was joined by PSG team-mate Thiago Silva in the Brazil line-up as coach Tite picked a strong side despite playing in front of a sparsely-filled Stade PierreMauroy in northern France.
Japan boss Vahid Halilhodzic, who served a fouryear spell as Lille coach over a decade ago, called up 12 Europe-based players for the double-header with Brazil and Belgium, but experienced attacking trio Shinji Kagawa, Shinji Okazaki and Keisuke Honda were all overlooked for selection.
Japan were thrashed 4-0 by a Neymar-inspired Brazil in their last encounter in 2014 and again quickly found themselves under threat from the world’s most expensive player.
Brazil’s Neymar dribbles past Japan’s Makoto Hasebe in Lille, France on Friday