Brazil’s run at the World Cup ended on Friday, as Belgium eliminated the five-time world champions, 2-1, in a thrilling encounter in Kazan.
Belgium took the lead against the run of play in the 13th minute, when Brazil’s Fernandinho turned a corner kick into his own net. Kevin de Bruyne buried a long shot following a terrific counterattacking play in the 31st minute to send Belgium 2-0 up into the break.
Belgium were comfortable in the first-half, but it was a different ball game in the second period as the Brazilians took the game on its head.
Brazil’s second half substitute Renato Augusto converted a header in the 76th minute to cut the deficit to 2-1, but despite all Brazil’s pressure late in the game — the Selecão never found the second goal they needed.
Eden Hazard and Thibaut Courtois were in excellent form in this game with Hazard being a spark in Belgium’s attack and played a key role towards the end of the game, drawing many fouls and dribbling past the Brazilians with relative ease. For Courtois, it was from one world-class save to another and Belgium will thank the Chelsea goalkeeper for being at his best in Kazan.
Belgium have a semifinal date with France as the tournament draws to a close.