FIFA World Cup favourites Brazil kicked off their campaign in Qatar in perfect fashion with a 2-0 win over Serbia.
After a tight first half, Tite’s Selecao opened up the Serbians with two second-half goals from Richarlison.
The Tottenham attacker opened his nation’s account in the 62nd minute, following up Vinicius Jnr’s angled strike which had been parried into his path by Serbian goalkeeper Vanja Milinkovic-Savic.
Richarlison made it a brace on 73 minutes with a sublime effort, controlling a cross before a jewel of a bicycle kick finished the job.
There were chances galore thereafter as the Brazilians played with more freedom, but they couldn’t add to the earlier tally in their Group G opener.
— FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) November 24, 2022
In Group H, Portugal edged Ghana 3-2 after a late flurry of goals.
Cristiano Ronaldo struck first from the spot after winning his own penalty, thundering the ball beyond Lawrence Ati-Zigi in the 65th minute.
By finding the back of the net, Ronaldo became the first men’s player in history to score goals at five separate World Cups.
It was the 37-year-old’s eighth World Cup goal and his 118th overall for Portugal. He also has a national record of 18 World Cup appearances to his name.
After Ronaldo’s heroics, the Ghanaians were back on level terms eight minutes later through Andre Ayew who tapped home from close range.
Portugal restored their lead five minutes later when Joao Felix finished expertly from a perfect Bruno Fernandes through-ball before substitute Rafael Leao made it 3-1 two minutes later.
The head of Osman Bukari gave Ghana hope in the 89th minute before the seesawing affair almost took another turn when Portugal keeper Diogo Costa was pick-pocketed by Inaki Williams in stoppage time but the ball was quickly cleared of danger.
The other Group H fixture saw Uruguay and South Korea play out a 0-0 draw.
Earlier in the night, Switzerland defeated Cameroon 1-0 in a tight and tense affair with Breel Embolo’s 48th-minute goal proving the difference.
The Monaco striker opted to not celebrate after netting against the country of his birth.
All of the World Cup action continues on Friday night with Wales v Iran in Group B from 9pm AEDT, before Qatar hosts Senegal at 12am.
It continues into Saturday morning with Netherlands v Ecuador from 3am before England meet USA at 6am.
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