Published: Wed, October 17, 2018
Sport | By Cameron Gross

Miranda edges Brazil past Argentina while Belgium and Holland draw

Miranda edges Brazil past Argentina while Belgium and Holland draw

The game was played in the heat of the King Abdullah Sports City and the conditions contributed to a stop-start encounter that included 35 fouls, 21 of them awarded to Brazil.

Brazil's Miranda celebrates after the match.

Despite the defeat a lack of fluidity, Argentina's work ethic, general defensive organisation and ability to threaten on the break suggests Scaloni is having a positive influence in his capacity as interim coach.

Missing from the Argentina line-up were also Manchester City's in-form forward Sergio Aguero, Paris Saint-Germain winger Angel Di Maria and AC Milan striker Gonzalo Higuain.

Brazil won tonight's Superclasico thanks to an injury time goal by Joao Miranda, with Gabriel Jesus playing 65 minutes and Ederson an unused substitute for Tite's team.

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Brazil, like Argentina, are going through a period of transition, according to Neymar. Miranda should have put Brazil 1-0 up in the 28th minute when a Casemiro cross fell at his feet but his scuffed shot was blocked on the line by Nicolás Otamendi.

Argentina responded quickly by coming close themselves through a Paulo Dybala free kick which rippled the side-netting, but the attacking highlights were few and far between and the two sides went into half time still goalless.

Neymar finally found room to stretch his legs in the 69th minute only to be cut down by Renzo Saravia, with Sergio Romero required to beat away Arthur's volley from the resultant free-kick. Miranda did not have to move from his position inside the six-yard box as he was left unmarked, and Neymar's pinpoint delivery left the centre-back with a simple finish from close range.

Earlier, NAIJ.com had reported how Argentina FA made it clear that they will not give any player the No 10 jersey in their hopes of convincing Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi to make a return to worldwide duty.

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