South America football heavyweight, Brazil have cruised into the 2018 World Cup after a convincing win against Paraguay.
Neymar in action
Brazil have become the first team to qualify for the 2018 World Cup as Argentina suffers painful setback.
Maintaining their proud record as the tournament’s only ever-present side with a little help from Lionel Messi’s foul mouth and lightly regarded Peru.
The five-times champions beat Paraguay 3-0 on Tuesday for their eighth successive win in the South American qualifying competition.
That in itself was not enough to confirm their participation in Russia but Peru’s surprise 2-1 win over Uruguay in a later game guaranteed Brazil a top-four finish.
With four rounds of fixtures remaining, Brazil have 33 points, followed by Colombia (24), Uruguay and Chile (23). Argentina (22) are in fifth place, which earns a two-leg play-off against the top-ranked Oceania region side.
Uruguay and Argentina still have to face each other which means it is impossible for both to overtake Brazil. Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho curled in a low opener for Brazil and Neymar capped an eventful evening with a goal in the second half before Marcelo added a late third in São Paulo.
“My greatest joy is sharing joy,” Tite said in quotes reported by espn.com.br.
“When you look at the face of your family, when you see the players happy, when you see a happy little child, sharing joy is my greatest satisfaction. More pleasure.”
The Barcelona forward Neymar, captaining the side, missed a penalty and saw an effort chalked off for offside on an evening when he was routinely on the end of rough treatment from the Paraguay defenders.