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Brazil, Nigeria earn crucial wins

Brazil left it late to earn a vital 2-0 win against Costa Rica in the second round of matches to avoid an upset in the group stages.

Costa Rica defended valiantly in the game until former Liverpool playmaker Coutinho opened the scoring in the 84th minute of the game. Tite’s men put the game to bed when Douglas Costa’s cross found PSG forward Neymar who finished from close range to give the Brazilians their first win in the tournament.

In the other Group D fixture, the Super Eagles of Nigeria got back to winning ways with a 2-0 win over debutants Iceland to keep their hopes of qualification alive. The first half ended in a stalemate but the Nigerians rediscovered their mojo in the second half thanks to a swift counter led by Chelsea’s Victor Moses whose cross found Ahmed Musa, the CSKA Moscow forward expertly controlled the ball before powering a shot from close range to send the Nigerian fans to raptures.

The Nigerians dominated affairs after the first goal and were duly rewarded with the second goal when Ahmed Musa raced beyond the defence, dribbled the goalkeeper before slotting the ball home. Iceland missed their chance to fight back when Gylfi Sigurdsson missed from the spot leaving the West Africans to earn all the three points.

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A point in the last group game against Argentina in the last group game may be enough for the former African Champions to book a place in the round of 16. Iceland needs to win their final match against group leaders Croatia to stand any chance of qualifying.

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