The tournament favorites climb to the top of Group G after moments of brilliance that shattered Serbia’s resolve.
Brazil’s Richarlison powered his side to a 2-0 win over Serbia at the Lusail Stadium as the tournament favorites opened their World Cup campaign in sparkling style.
The 25-year-old striker opened the Seleção account just after the hour mark in Thursday night’s Group G game and then added a spectacular second shortly after in the 73rd minute.
That final strike saw the Tottenham Hotspur striker convert a cross from winger Vinicius Jr as he blasted the ball over his head before leaping into the air to drive home a superb cycling shot.
Serbia, who had offered fierce resistance for the first two thirds of the match, were then left to chase shadows on their final shots as the Brazilian players shut the ball down and staged regular raids on their opponents’ box, highlighting their credentials as the most dangerous in the competition.
Serbia, for their part, had sweated over the fitness of their all-time top scorer, Aleksandar Mitrovic, but coach Dragan Stojkovic named him in the starting lineup.
But unlike the Brazilian attack line which threatened from all sides, the Fulham striker found himself isolated in front with little service.
The result leaves Brazil top of Group G, followed by Switzerland in second place after the European team’s victory over Cameroon earlier on Thursday.
The South American giants, who are looking for a sixth World Cup victory, will play against Switzerland next Monday. Serbia face Cameroon on the same day.