EAST RUTHERFORD NJ - AUGUST 10: Neymar #11 Paulo Henrique Ganso #10 and Alexandre Pato #9 of Brazil celebrate Neymar's goal against the U.S. in the first half of a friendly match at the New Meadowlands on August 10 2010 in East Rutherford New Jersey. (Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)

Copa America 2011, Brazil Vs. Ecuador: Neymar, Pato Guide Brazil To 4-2 Win

Brazil have won Group B with their 4-2 win over Ecuador and will now face Paraguay in the quarterfinals in a rematch.

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Copa America 2011, Brazil Vs. Ecuador: Final Score; Neymar, Pato Braces Lead To 4-2 Triumph

Finally, Mano Manezes' Brazil produce the samba football everyone's been waiting for. Brazil keeper Julio Cesar struggled on Wednesday night, leading to a couple of goals for Ecuador, but don't let the scoreboard fool you. Brazil won 4-2 to win Group B and advance to the quarterfinals of the 2011 Copa America, but their performance probably deserved a bigger margin of victory. All of Neymar, Pato and Ganso were fantastic, and the Brazil defense was better than the two goals they allowed. With their victory, Ecuador has been eliminated from the competition.

All of Brazil's goals came off of close-range finishes by either Pato or Neymar, who scored two goals each, and it felt like Ganso had a serious hand in all of them, even if he only registered one assist. Like Argentina, Brazil played their best game of the tournament in the final game of the group stages after starting slow, and they now have some momentum going into the quarterfinals. 

Brazil will now have a rematch against Paraguay, who advanced as the best third placed team in the group stages. in their first meeting, the two teams played to a 2-2 draw.


Copa America 2011, Brazil Vs. Ecuador Score: Teams Tied 1-1 At Halftime

As it stands, Brazil are on their way to the quarterfinals of the 2011 Copa Libertadores, but they won't necessarily be thrilled with the result that's getting them there. They're currently locked in a 1-1 draw with Ecuador, thanks to an absolute howler by their goalkeeper, Julio Cesar. 

Pato scored the opening goal for Brazil with a very powerful header off of a cross by Andre Santos. Their lead didn't last long, though, as Felipe Caicedo found and equalizer for Ecuador with a shot from outside of the penalty area. His shot was right at Julio Cesar, who should have stopped the shot easily, but the ball end underneath him and into the back of the net.

If the current result holds, Brazil would slot into a difficult matchup against Colombia. If they win, they will face Chile in the quarterfinals. Neither will be easy, so the pride of actually winning a match is probably the tiebreaker when determining what result is desirable for Brazil.


Copa America 2011, Brazil Vs. Ecuador: Lineups

We've come down to the final match of the Copa America group stage and amazingly Brazil still do not have a spot in the knockout stage secured. They will need a win or draw over Ecuador to ensure advancement, while Ecuador needs to defeat Brazil to go through. Venezuela and Paraguay have already secured a spot in the knockout stages from Group B, but the order in which they advance is still up for grabs.

Brazil is playing with their first choice team in their preferred 4-3-3 formation with Ganso sitting in front of the other two midfielders in the middle and behing the dangerous attacking trio of Robinho, Pato and Neymar. For Ecuador, they will have to deal without Antonio Valencia, who remains out due to injury,

Brazil (4-3-3): Julio Cesar; Maicon, Lucio, Thiago Silva, Andre Santos; Lucas Leiva, Ramires, Ganso; Robinho, Pato, Neymar

Ecuador (4-4-2): Marcelo Elizaga; Neicer Reasco, Norberto Araujo, Frickson Erazo, Walter Ayoví; Oswaldo Minda, Christian Noboa, Michael Arroyo, Edison Méndez; Christian Benítez, Geovanny Caicedo


Copa America 2011, Brazil Vs. Ecuador: Preview

After the 2010 World Cup, Dunga was ousted as the manager of Brazil. The poor result that was getting knocked out of the tournament by the Netherlands was certainly a contributing factor, but Dunga was a marked man before that. He was always going to lose his job if he didn't win the World Cup. A defensive midfielder in his playing days, Dunga insisted on a more organized Brazil. He didn't pick Neymar for his team. Both choices incensed the public and the media. When he failed to produce, the actual firing was just a formality.

Enter Mano Manezes, a man who was supposed to return Brazil to their samba football roots. Instantly, he brought Neymar and Paulo Henrique Ganso into the side. Early results were encouraging, but the two most recent results in Copa America have been anything but. Brazil have played to two draws so far, the first of which was an incredibly boring encounter against Venezuela. A third straight draw will get Brazil into the quarterfinals - just barely - but that won't be enough to satisfy their fans.

Of course, a couple of knockout stage wins would shut everyone right up, but the pressure on them to produce in the quarterfinals might be too intense to handle should they fail to beat Ecuador in their final Copa America group stage match on Wednesday night. Though Ecuador have a few big time talents, they're nowhere near the talent of Brazil, and they're certainly behind group-mates Paraguay in that department as well. They only have one point, and they've barely earned that.

Brazil won't know their exact situation until the end of the Venezuela-Paraguay match, but they should probably win regardless of what happens, or face the wrath of their fans.

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