Brazil Can No Longer Be Regarded as World Cup Favourites Following Chile Win

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Brazil Can No Longer Be Regarded as World Cup Favourites Following Chile Win
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

They may have progressed to the last eight of the World Cup, but Brazil's performance in their victory over Chile indicated that they should no longer be regarded as tournament favourites.

The Selecao progressed thanks to a 3-2 shootout win after goals from David Luiz and Alexis Sanchez had the sides level at 1-1 at full time, but numerous frailties were exposed by a determined Chile outfit that was desperately unlucky to fall short in this round-of-16 clash.

Based on the four games the hosts have played so far, teams such as Colombia, Netherlands, France and Argentina all look more likely to claim the ultimate prize.

Chile started the game in Belo Horizonte nervously and were unable to retain the possession they are so used to keeping.

Hassan Ammar/Associated Press

After the Chileans had gifted them numerous set pieces, Brazil finally took advantage when Luiz bundled a cross home.

The Selecao failed to kill off the contest, however, and their opponents gradually grew in confidence.

Led by the brilliant Sanchez, Chile took control of the game.

Alexis' goal, resulting from a Hulk blunder, had an element of luck to it, but Jorge Sampaoli's team lifted its game from that point onward and was more than a match for Brazil.

The Chileans' star forward took control of the match in a way in which his Barcelona team-mate, Neymar, could not.

The golden boy of Brazilian football faded badly, hardly touching the ball for long periods of time and failing to convert decent chances when they did fall his way.

Brazil, who had looked comfortable sitting back while they held a lead, lacked ideas once Chile were level on the scoreboard and asking questions on the pitch.

Luiz Felipe Scolari's side lacked creativity once supply to Neymar was cut off by some dogged defending from the team in red.

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Oscar had a poor game in midfield, while Fred offered little up front. His replacement, Jo, was just as wasteful in front of goal.

Even as Chile struggled with fitness in extra time, the home team could not fully seize control.

The underdogs were tremendously unlucky not to win the game at the death, when substitute Mauricio Pinilla smashed a shot against the crossbar.

Brazil may still be alive in this World Cup, but they will need to improve immensely if they are to have a chance of winning it.

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