Brazil opened the Confederations Cup on Saturday by easily defeating Japan 3-0. The game was marred however, by teargas that was fired at protesters who were protesting outside the soccer stadium during the match.
Neymar, who recently signed a multi-million dollar contract with Barcelona, opened the scoring for Brazil after just three minutes of play with a sensational volley from 25 yards.
Brazil had other scoring opportunities in the first half, but did not net their second goal until just after the second half started. Paulinho scored thanks to a perfect cross by Dani Alves in front of the goal.
Brazil ended its scoring in stoppage time after Jo, a late substitute, was able to race onto a perfect pass from teammate Oscar and slot home the ball beyond the goalkeepers reach.
The affects of teargas caused thousands of fans to be treated by first aid personnel. Nevertheless, the Brazilian national team started their defense of the Confederations Cup in grand style. The Brazilians have won the last two consecutive Confederations Cups in 2005 and 2009.
Many consider this tournament to be a small prelude to next summer’s World Cup that will be played in Brazil.
Much expectation is centered on the young Neymar who is just 21 and a great deal of pressure was taken off his shoulders when he volleyed the ball home early in the match.
Many fans and soccer writers consider Neymar as the heir apparent to Lionel Messi of Argentina as the world’s best soccer player.
Sunday, Mexico is schedule to play Italy and Uruguay will take on Spain.