Brazil Beats Spain, Retains Olympic Football Gold

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Brazil retained its Olympic football title after substitute Malcolm scored an extra-time winner in a 2-1 victory against Spain in the men’s football gold medal game at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics in Japan.

Brazil were awarded a penalty in the 39th minute when Spain goalkeeper Unai Simon came out to clear a cross, but crashed into Matheus Cunha, only for Richarlison to blast the spot-kick high over the bar.

However, the South Americans took the lead just before halftime. Claudinho’s deep cross was hooked back across the area by Brazil captain Daniel Alves and Cunha brought the ball down and fired into the net for the opener.

Brazil striker Matheus Cunha celebrates goal against Spain during Tokyo 2020 Olympics football final

Spain threatened little but got on level terms in the 61st minute after a beautiful play by substitute Carlos Soler.

Soler broke down the right flank and sent in a cross to the back post where Mikel Oyarzabal connected with a sweet left-foot volley that whistled past Brazil goalkeeper Santos.

Spain celebrates Carlos Soler goal against Brazil

With Brazil looking to break on the counter and Spain moving the ball well, the game was tightly balanced in the latter stages but the Spaniards came closest to grabbing a win in normal time.

Oscar Gil’s cross-shot from the right caught out Santos and struck the top of the bar in the 86th minute and two minutes later Bryan Gil’s thundering shot from outside the box blasted against the bar.

After the game ended 1-1 in normal time, Malcolm was introduced by Brazil coach Andre Jardine. The substitution proved to be crucial as the Zenit St Petersburg winger scored the winner after racing onto a diagonal ball from Antony. Malcolm got the better of Jesus Vallejo, before driving the winner into the far corner in the 108th minute.

Brazil winger Malcolm celebrates goal against Spain

Brazil had their seventh Gold at the Olympics, and will now attempt to become the first men’s team to be crowned champions three times in a row at the next Olympics Games in Paris.

It’s a third straight Olympic soccer medal for Brazil after also collecting bronze in 2012. But Spain’s quest to emulate its 1992 run to gold goes on, despite six members of the starting lineup coming straight from the run to the European Championship.  

 

Chidi Nwoke/Tokyo Olympics.

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