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Brazil sweep Spain aside in Rio

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Brazil beat ten-man Spain 3-0 to win the Confederations Cup at an electrically charged Maracana Stadium in Rio.

Two first half-goals – one inside two minutes from Fred and the other just moments before the break from Neymar - set the hosts on the way to an impressive victory and Fred added a third minutes after the re-start to complete the rout

So well did the Brazilians hassle, press and hurry the Spanish that other countries will surely use this performance as a blueprint to play against La Roja – though the world champions will not often play as poorly as this.

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City stars David Silva and Jesus Navas surprisingly started on the bench and watched on as their team-mates wilted in the Rio heat but after Fred made it 3-0 a couple of minutes into the second half, Navas was finally brought into the fray.

And the City winger had an instant impact winning a penalty within seconds of arriving, but Sergio Ramos fired the spot-kick horribly wide to all-but end Spain’s hopes of a comeback.

The introduction of David Villa just before the hour meant Silva’s season had finally ended officially and he will now head off for a well-earned break after an almost 11-month season.

Gerard Pique was sent off towards the end but there was no further scoring on the night with Spain - who could argue Navas was their best player - left licking their wounds after a first defeat in 30 competitive games and no doubt looking forward to restoring their reputation in the coming months.

 

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