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All eyes on the prize as Brazil took on Peru in the first semi-final clash in Copa America 2021. With just one more match to decide the best team in the continent, both teams put their hearts and souls on the green to decide who is worthy of a title shot. The hosts, Brazil, were the undisputed favourites heading into the clash as Peru looked to spring a surprise.



Tite’s men managed to go through to the finals courtesy of a lone goal by Paqueta. Peru rose to their feet in an exciting second-half of football but did not do enough to beat Brazil. Ederson in goal was not tested enough unlike his counterpart and Brazil will once again get a chance to lift one of the most prestigious trophies in world football.

FootTheBall has handpicked five things that we have learned from this semi-final clash between Brazil and Peru.


Peru headed into the semi-final after one of the most exciting matches in the competition. However, they did not look like a semi-final team on the day. There was no confidence and exuberance on the ball. Constant fear of their opponents’ strengths was visible in the body language of each and every player. Mostly opting to sit back deep in their box, Peru was inviting Brazil to take the initiative. A rather thoughtless demeanor from a semi-finalist.



Brazil, unlike any team in the world, posses a rare bunch of extremely skilled individuals. Almost everyone, including the goalkeepers, plays football with flair. Tricks, skills, flicks, and knicks are part of their game and so their creative spark can break down any defence. A deep block, especially an unorganized one, is not a herculean task for this time. Peru played too many loose balls, made unnecessary mistakes to help Brazil’s cause of yet another final. A first-half mistake they corrected with some high-impact substitutes.


Tite has one of the best squads in the competition at his disposal. The likes of Champions League players like Neymar, Casemiro, Silva, Ederson, Lodi, and Marquinhos all make up one of the most experienced starting line-ups in the tournament. A bench that is made of Militiao, Sanchez, Fabinho, Vinicius, and Firmino among others a rarity for any other country in the continent. So, it comes as no surprise that Brazil goes into every match oozing with confidence.



Brazil was extremely comfortable on the ball as always. Every touch was glorious, with backheels and side footers becoming a norm as the minutes ticked on. Peru was increasingly frustrated by the excellent show of skill and trickery they were up against. Neymar’s unwavering confidence to nutmeg a player inside the box when pressured by three white shirts leading to the opener being just a small indicator of how good the players in blue and yellow were playing.


The two ends of the field bore witness to two contrasting tales. Pedro Gallese was one of the busiest people on planet earth for the opening half of the game. The keeper made excellent saves throughout the game to give his side a fighting chance in the matchup. If not for his presence the game would’ve been over by the end of the first 45 minutes. Peru’s second-half revival is a credit to the first half brilliance by their captain between the sticks.



The other end of the field saw a different story altogether. Although Ederson was forced to make two fine saves, he was mostly not bothered. Ederson did keep Brazil afloat during the rare moments of Peru’s attacking threat. However, he barely had a touch besides those moments. The well-drilled Brazilian defence ate up any other danger that lurked their defensive third.


Brazil’s superstars are excellent with the ball. They are also capable of finding the net due to their excellent creative play. Creating chances was never a problem for the Selecao. However, the absence of a natural striker may be concerning. Neymar does bag a substantial number of goals but his position on the field does not reflect his marker on paper.



Despite controlling the majority stake in possession and creating nearly exponential chances, the men in yellow and blue found only one goal in ninety minutes. They had to rely on some exquisite footwork from Neymar to find the goal. An over-reliance they cannot afford, especially since they have too many good names in the line-up. The Brazilian defence once again had to be sharp to secure the win for the hosts.


Brazil might not be satisfied with their one-goal win against Peru, but they are through to the finals. The defending champions will look to once again lift the coveted silverware when they take the field a few days from now. They did enough against Peru on the day but will hope to improve their in front of the goal as they get ready for the final clash.



Their opponents will be decided tomorrow as Argentina take on Colombia. Messi is once again the star man in the campaign and his presence will be vital for Argentina’s progression into the finals. Neymar Jr. is flowing with confidence as he heads into the final and will want to outshine his former teammate. A few more days and South America will declare its champions!


A statistical run-through of the game might probably not give Neymar enough credit. In fact, he might just be average or below when considering such numbers. His dribbling success ratio and his passing accuracy will be less than one expects, but to our naked eyes, he is one of the most impactful players on the field.


If Brazil will name one player, they would choose to receive the ball at the edge of the box, pressured by three chasing defenders, it would surely be Neymar. I don’t see any player on that green that would lure three men towards him, nutmeg one in the process to find his teammate in space. A move that found the only goal in the game.

Be it flicks, passes with your back, a backheel, a rabona, or even a thirty-yard swinger, Neymar was the shining light on the field. His flair was as visible, maybe even more prominent than his hair. Football is, after all, entertainment, and none does it better than Brazil’s no.10. A player capable of changing the game on his own. Brazil did need his help to go through to their second successive final.




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