27.3.07

Brazil struggles to hold on to lead

Reuters) - Brazil were heavily indebted to goalkeeper Julio Cesar in their 1-0 win over Ghana in a friendly international on Tuesday.Vagner Love scored the winner in a rematch of the 2006 World Cup second-round tie which Brazil won 3-0 but Julio Cesar was their most important player.He made his first notable save in the 15th minute when he tipped away Eric Addo's close-range header.
Two minutes later, Brazil won a corner, Kaka headed on at the near post and Vagner Love, unmarked at the far post, drilled the ball home for his second international goal.Julio Cesar was in action again in the 20th minute as he blocked a dangerous run by Alex Tachie Mensah.Despite missing captain Stephen Appiah and midfielder Michael Essien, Ghana continued to threaten the South Americans in a surprisingly slow-paced game.
Julio Cesar made his best save to turn away Laryea Kingston's fierce drive from the edge of the area in the 50th minute and tipped over Sulley Muntari's 30-metre free kick shortly afterwards.Muntari's effort scraped the crossbar before going out to safety.Brazil, who thrashed Chile 4-0 in Gothenburg on Saturday, were happy to threaten on the break and created a clear opening in the 65th minute which was wasted by Kaka, who toe-poked the ball wide.Ghana had midfielder Haminu Dramani sent off for a second bookable offence in the 77th minute, after which the game fizzled out with Brazil happy to sit back on their lead.
Source:Reuters





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