Brazil vs. Spain, 2013 Confederations Cup final: Halftime score 2-0, La Roja coming apart

Laurence Griffiths

It's been all Brazil in the first half of the Confederations Cup final, and Spain look light on answers.

Update: Brazil 3-0 Spain, final score - Match report.

Everything is going exactly to plan for Brazil, who have been sensational in the first half against Spain. It hasn't been the prettiest football in the world, but they've played intensely and Spain have absolutely no answer for their high-tempo game. Fred and Neymar scored at either end of the half, and Brazil lead 2-0.

Fred's goal came less than two minutes into the match. Hulk set it up with a cross, but it was really set up by the Spain players who failed to do anything about it. The ball bounced off Neymar before falling to Fred, who had evaded Gerard Pique, then fallen down. While on his rear end, he chipped a brilliant finish over Iker Casillas.

Things got very chippy after that, with both sides committing a number of hard fouls, though Brazil certainly were the worse offenders. Spain couldn't figure out how to deal with Brazil's extremely high pressure, vigorous closing down and, at times, persistent fouling. They did have one great chance late in the half off a counter, but Juan Mata had his shot cleared off the line by club teammate David Luiz.

Just before the break, Neymar made it 2-0 with this spectacular strike into the roof of the net at the near post.


Spain are very rarely a goal down and almost never two down. This game marks the first time since the 2009 Confederations Cup that they've been down in the knockout stage of a major tournament and their game is very dependent on not having to chase a lead.

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