Rio 2016: Brazil again give fans reason to jeer as football team draws with Iraq

Brazil, which has never won the Olympic gold medal in men’s football, failed to win for the second consecutive game, held to a 0-0 draw by Iraq on Sunday.

Brazil’s Neymar vies for the ball with Iraq’s Alaa Ali during the Rio 2016 Olympic Games Men’s First Round Group A football match against Iraq, at the Mane Garrincha Stadium in Brasilia on August 7, 2016. (AFP)
Powered by automated translation

Disappointed yet again, the Brazilian fans jeered their own team and saved their applause for Iraq.

Brazil, which has never won the Olympic gold medal in men’s football, failed to win for the second consecutive game, held to a 0-0 draw by Iraq on Sunday.

The result leaves Brazil tied for second place in Group A. The team needs a victory over Denmark on Wednesday in Salvador to advance and avoid another huge embarrassment at home two years after the 7-1 loss to Germany in the World Cup semi-finals.

Neymar, the tournament’s biggest star, played below expectations for the second straight game, and promising young strikers Gabigol and Gabriel Jesus also struggled.

Voicing their frustration, the fans chanted “Marta, Marta” in reference to the five-time world player of the year who has been thriving with the women’s national team.

And as the Iraqis rejoiced on the field after the draw, the fans applauded the team and broke out into chants of “Iraq, Iraq.”

Brazil midfielder Renato Augusto had his team’s best chance for Brazil, but his volley from close range sailed over the crossbar with the goalkeeper already beaten.

Brazil is trying to win its first gold medal in football and it arrived for Sunday’s match under pressure after a disappointing 0-0 draw in the opener against South Africa.

The crowd of more than 60,000 started supporting Brazil but it grew anxious as the team struggled against Iraq, jeering the players at halftime and more and more toward the end of the match.

Gabriel Jesus, who last week secured a multimillion-dollar transfer to Manchester City, missed a few decent chances early and was loudly booed when he was substituted in the second half.

Brazil also had a goal by Gabigol disallowed in the 28th because of offside, and Augusto hit the crossbar with a shot just before halftime.

Follow us on Twitter @NatSportUAE

Like us on Facebook at facebook.com/TheNationalSport