Qatar World Cup: Why Richarlison’s magical strike is a pivotal moment for Brazil

Magic, sheer magic. A goal that combines ballet, athletics and acrobatics can only create extraordinary talent. Richarlison’s goal was truly a magical moment in the Qatar World Cup. A moment that will be replayed endlessly. One that will rank among the iconic moments of the World Cup.

Vinicius Jr cut in from the left and squared the ball to Richarlison, who was inches from the penalty spot. The Brazilian, who was trailing towards the Serbian goal, could turn and shoot, but the pass was a little too quick. What Richterlison did next was nothing but pure magic.

Football gave way to ballet. Richarlison calmly tossed the ball up, and as it landed on his shoulder, he spun and unleashed an acrobatic volley in mid-air. Strength combined with health. The ball flew towards the Serbian goal. It was wonderful. Magnificent. An explosive genius strike.

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Singing, the Heung-Lucil Stadium erupted into a frenzy as footballers in yellow and blue danced and sang together on the pitch. A typical Brazilian celebration. A celebration that reverberated around the world.

The second goal was the crowning moment that gave way to a flurry of attacks. Richarlison, Vinicius and Neymar were soon benched. Antony, Gabriel Jesus and Gabriel Martinelli came. Rodrgyo replaced Merceril Casemiro in midfield. The shots fired at the Serbian goal didn’t drop and one rattled the woodwork. Brazil’s display of firepower was terrifying.

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Serbia kept the Brazilians out for 62 minutes in the Group G match. Most of the game was played in Serbia’s half, with the defense holding up well. For a while, the Brazilian looked stale, and Richarlison was so lost that Gabriel Jesus looked like a better option.

Before such thoughts died down, Neymar’s run into the penalty box inspired the Serbian defence. Vinicius whipped in a pass that was intercepted by Serbian goalkeeper Vanja Mlinkovic-Civic. Richarlison pounced on the rebound and slammed it home. A cathartic moment for the Brazilian forward and his teammates.

The goal buried the demons of Richarlison’s poor season with Tottenham Hotspurs. With the millstone from his neck, it was time to make magic. He doubled it with a stunning bicycle kick that kicked the Brazilian into a high gear. Soon they started playing like favourites. Like the number one team in the world. With passion and willpower, he ruled the field.

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A truly classic Brazilian performance. So dominant, yet delightful. Powerful and pleasing. This is the style of samba. The Selecao are here with a new weapon, eager to shake off the bitter memories of the past 20 years.

Go ahead, Neymar. De Andrade Richarlison has arrived.

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