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Vinicius Junior Shines on Rio Return as Brazil Crush Chile

Vinicius Junior Shines on Rio Return as Brazil Crush Chile

Friday, 25 March, 2022 - 08:45
Vinicius Jr. after scoring Brazil’s second goal against Chile in World Cup qualifying, Thursday, March 24, 2022, in Rio de Janeiro. (AP)

Vinicius Junior celebrated a return to the Maracana stadium on Thursday with his first international goal for Brazil and a starring performance in their 4-0 thrashing of Chile.


The 21-year-old wide man played for Flamengo before sealing a transfer to Real Madrid and he excelled at his former home, taking advantage of a neat Neymar dummy to slot an angled shot past Claudio Bravo on the stroke of halftime.


The goal was wedged between penalties by Neymar and Philippe Coutinho and followed in stoppage time by a fourth goal from substitute Richarlison.


"At the Maracana with my family, there was nowhere better to score my first international goal," he said. "I'm very happy."


Sports news website Globoesporte said the player bought more than 100 tickets for friends and family.


"It's our last game in Brazil before the World Cup and we are going to thank the fans," he added. "Now we have to keep working hard and doing the right things to ensure we win the title at the end of the year."


The victory was Brazil's seventh in seven home qualifiers against Chile, who must now beat the already qualified Uruguay in their final match next Tuesday to have any hope of landing a World Cup playoff spot.


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