Gabon 0 Brazil 2: better from Brazil

I thought Jonas (right) played quite well (Mowa Press)

I thought Brazil were quite good tonight. They beat Gabon 2-0 in Libreville in some tough conditions in what is a very odd looking friendly match. Odd in the sense that why are the five times World Champions playing against the 68th best team in the world on a shoddy pitch in Gabon. Are Brazil just being nice to the Gabonese people? Or are the Gabonese authorities just depositing bucket loads of money into a Brazilian/Swiss bank account and promising to support Ricardo Teixeira’s possible bid to become next Fifa president in return for the favour? I wonder.

Brazil were without some of their star players (Neymar, Ronaldinho, Kaká, Dani Alvez, Robinho) and had to contend with a blackout just before kick-off as well as a terrible pitch. Despite all that Brazil managed to play some good passing football at times and deserved their win. You can’t say that about some of their more recent performances.

A string of second half substitutions from both teams slowed the pace of the game down and match became pretty boring to be honest. But Bruno César made an encouraging debut and was a couple of feet away from scoring from inside his own half with the keeper beaten. Great vision and technique. Hulk, Hernanes and Jonas all looked quite lively and made a claim for some more game time in Mano’s team. The midfield combined quite nicely with Elias and Sandro playing in the middle too.

Sandro opened the scoring with a scrappy first half goal and Hernanes made the points safe with a header after Jonas stung the palms of the Gabonese keeper with a very good shot from outside the area. Unfortunately we didn’t see the return of Kaká who missed the match through injury. He had been named in the squad for the first time since the World Cup last year. I’m not sure if he’ll play against Egypt next week. Marcelo and Fernandinho also missed out with injuries after being called up.

So, does anybody have anything to say about this performance other than the above?

Diego Alves, Fábio (Alex Sandro), Luisão, David Luiz, Adriano; Sandro (Lucas Leiva), Elias (Thiago Silva), Hernanes, Bruno César (Willian); Jonas (Dudu) and Hulk (Kléber)

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