Brazil rallies past U.S. in finalBrazil’s “Beautiful Game” came alive in the second half Sunday with three comeback goals in a 3-2 win over the upstart United States in the Confederations Cup final.
JOHANNESBURG (AP) — Brazil’s “Beautiful Game” came alive in the second half Sunday with three comeback goals in a 3-2 win over the upstart United States in the Confederations Cup final.
Luis Fabiano scored two of the goals and Lucio added the third in the 84th minute to give Brazil its second straight Confederations Cup title and third overall.
It was all looking good for the Americans, playing in the men’s final of a FIFA tournament for the first time, in the first half when Clint Dempsey and Landon Donovan gave the team a 2-0 halftime lead.
“You realize why these guys are worth so much at times like this, but it’s still disappointing,” Donovan said. “We are in the position where we don’t want respect, we want to win.”
Brazil looked like a beaten team in the first 45 minutes, creating little and being constantly stymied by the United States defense and goalkeeper Tim Howard.
Fabiano started the comeback in the 46th minute. The striker collected a pass from Ramires before turning and shooting past defender Jay DeMerit for his fourth goal of the tournament. He added a tournament-leading fifth to equalize in the 74th, heading in a rebound after Kaka’s cross was kicked against the crossbar by Robinho.
“We gave up the first goal so early in second half,” United States coach Bob Bradley said. “We really put ourselves in a tough spot.”
Lucio then delivered the decisive goal in the 84th, heading a corner from Elano past Howard.
Dempsey, who also scored in the 2-0 semifinal win over Spain, gave the Americans the lead in the 10th minute by redirecting a cross from Jonathan Spector. Donovan added the second by finishing off some nice passing play with Charlie Davies on a fast counterattack in the 27th.
Spector started the unthinkable after only 10 minutes, running down the right and sending a low cross into the area. Dempsey, who had plenty of room to maneuver, raised his right leg and put just enough of a touch on the ball to alter the direction and send it past a diving Julio Cesar.
Brazil has won eight matches in a row, and is unbeaten in 16. The five-time world champions also won the Confederations Cup in 1997 and 2005.