Brazil top Group F after breezing past Panama in their opening fixture of the World Cup. A performance that could imply Brazil will go far into the competition.
The second game of Group F was one to keep an eye on. Brazil the side fancied to defeat debutants Panama who just like Jamaica were hoping to cause a shock. However, Panama were under pressure in the opening minute of the game, a fast start from the Brazilians who nearly had an early goal to celebrate but Leal da Silva was unable to turn her left - footed effort past Yenith Bailey in the Panama goal. Brazil were settling into a nice early rhythm and showed no signs of vulnerability without legend Marta Viera da Silva who was looking to compete in her sixth world cup this year. A natural goal scorer that maybe would have converted some of the half chances Brazil had created for themselves during the first ten minutes.
Panama were struggling to deal with the fluidity and flair of the Brazilian side who were keeping and moving the ball well, in particular young superstar Kerolin who's on the radar of some Women's Super League teams. Kerolin was finding pockets off space in the attacking third and Panama were looking helpless to the direct forward play the midfielder was demonstrating. 20 minutes had past by and Brazil kept pressing on, a free kick from Debhina narrowly flew past the post to add to their frustration. Frustration quickly became joy though as Brazil finally got the goal they deserved. A fantastic ball from the left looped into the back post where winger Alves Borges was unmarked and headed home. A superb, composed finish from Borges whose header was firm into the ground putting the attempt way out of reach of Bailey. With the way Brazil were flowing it appeared this wasn't going to be the only time Bailey would be called upon to try and prevent a goal.
Panama had no answer to Brazil's control, their sloppiness proven by the fact only one of their 11 players on the pitch had completed more than 10 successful passes. As for Brazil all their players had done this with ease, the only player who hadn't was keeper Izidoro Lima da Silva who had near enough nothing to do, maybe some handstands would keep her entertained as she watched on from her 18-yard box. Brazil came close to doubling their lead on the 35-minute mark, a small scramble in the Panama box saw the ball break to Luana Bertolucci Paixao whose strike was high but still tested Bailey. Bailey again was forced to make another great save to keep the scoreline at 1-0. It wasn't long after this chance that Brazil did go onto double their lead another sweeping attack down the left as full back Dias De Britto timed her overlap to perfection before delivering a dangerous cross which was once more met by Borges. Borges was denied at first but smashed in the rebound to grab herself a deserved brace.
The first half came to end and Brazil were in their comfort zone, despite Panama's valiant efforts they couldn't handle the purposeful attacking play which would see Brazil lead the game 2-0 after 45 minutes.
The second half began how the first ended, Brazil with fluent elegant play down the left involving Debinha and the a few more flicks and tricks later created the space for Zaneratto to grab her first goal of the tournament. A wonderful team goal which was a true representation of the samba style Brazil always bring. Something Brazil have shown is that every player is selfless, they work for each other and that's why they're so strong. Borges was on a hattrick but setup Zaneratto instead to make the score 3-0 and secure all three points for this exciting squad.
Panama were growing tired which was making it easy for Brazil to bypass the midfield and get into the threatening positions where their three goals came from. Kerolin was the next to go close doing well to work the yard of space it was disappointing to see her effort dragged wide as it was a promising opportunity to make it 4 from about 20 yards out. Geyse da Silva Ferreira was looking lively on the wing after being substituted on, Panama were mesmerised by her skill which played a massive factor in Brazil making it 4-0. Geyse found herself in acres of space on the left wing and delivered a pinpoint cross to guess who? Borges couldn't miss as she tucked away her hattrick with another header, poor Bailey in the Panama net was once again left stranded and despite her best attempts couldn't do anything to deny Borges.
Even though Brazil had scored four goals the biggest roar came at the 75th minute mark when Borges was replaced by a legend of the game Marta, the leading goal scorer for most goals scored across the six World Cups she has competed in.
Brazil pushed for a 5th goal to claim even more authority over the game and it's surprising the scoreline wasn't double digits considering Brazil had an incredible 30 plus attempts on goal. Although there was a large sum of additional time, 9 minutes to be precise the match finished Brazil 4 Panama 0. A competent victory for Brazil who must now fancy their chances to top Group F after France drew to Jamaica. As for Panama they have Jamaica next and it has to be said if they want to keep their world cup hopes alive they will need a win.