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Brazil beats Colombia 2-1 to reach semifinals

FORTALEZA, Brazil (AP) - Brazil made its way into the World Cup semifinals for the first time in 12 years, with goals coming from defenders Thiago Silva and David Luiz in a 2-1 win over Colombia on Friday.

Brazil, which had been eliminated in the quarterfinals at the last two World Cups, will next play Germany on Tuesday in Belo Horizonte.

Silva gave Brazil the lead in the seventh minute, scoring with his left knee after a corner from Neymar passed through the Colombian defense. He celebrated the goal by pointing to the emblem on his jersey and shouting, "This is Brazil, this is Brazil."

Luiz added the second from a free kick in the 69th, sending a swerving long-range shot off the side of his foot into the top of the net.

Colombia got one back in the 80th. James Rodriguez scored his tournament-leading sixth goal from the penalty spot after Brazil goalkeeper Julio Cesar brought down substitute Carlos Bacca inside the area.

Rodriguez tried to control the pace of the match at the Arena Castelao, but it was Brazil that created most of the scoring chances as Colombia goalkeeper David Ospina had to make a series of saves in the first half alone.

The Colombians tried to pressure in the end after Rodriguez's penalty, but Brazil held on with tough defending.

"This is a very tough moment for us," Colombia coach Jose Pekerman said. "We always had the dream of winning this match even though we knew Brazil would be a very tough opponent. We knew how decisive this was, and that any mistake would cost us."

Colombia was coming off four straight wins, playing some of the most impressive football of the tournament.

And the Colombians, playing in the quarterfinals for the first time, had entered the match with an offensive team that had scored 11 goals, second only to the Netherlands.

"After not playing in the World Cup for so long, we were able to show the value of the Colombian football and the talent of some of our players," said Pekerman, an Argentine. "They showed great spirit and presence of mind. They came to play a great World Cup, not just to participate."

There was a lot of talk about Rodriguez and Neymar before the match, but the 22-year-old forwards didn't really live up to expectations. Rodriguez scored the late penalty but was otherwise mostly ineffective, as was Neymar before he left on a stretcher after being hit on the back late in the match.

The Brazilian star was apparently crying in pain as he was carried out of the field.

Silva was the crucial player for Brazil, but he will miss the match against Germany after getting his second yellow card of the tournament for trying to keep Ospina from putting the ball back in play.

Colombia had a goal disallowed in the 66th minute for offside. Veteran defender Mario Yepes found the net from close range after a scramble inside the penalty area but the linesman had already stopped play.

Brazil is trying to become the first host to win the World Cup since France in 1998.

At the last two World Cups, Brazil lost to the Netherlands in the quarterfinals in 2010 and to France in 2006. The team hadn't made it to the semifinals since it won its fifth world title in South Korea and Japan in 2002.

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1000|Char. 1000  Char.
queencelt July 04 2014 at 7:30 PM

I love the original football (as distinguished from American football) because anyone, boy or girl, in any financial circumstances, can play it. All you need is a ball, even a home-made one. You don't need fancy clothes or equipment, or even shoes. Too many American sports favor the rich, by requiring expensive clothes and equipment. Football is the great equalizer.

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2 replies
God Bless You queencelt July 04 2014 at 11:04 PM

Queencelt, you are right. When I was boy, we would start a game without having a soccer ball. We used to improvise with tennis ball, softball, or just a plain empty can. My grandson plays soccer as a teenager. Uniform, trainning, and being in an official boy's team cost money. Being able to belong to any type of team while attending elementary or high school cost money.

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grgrytckr queencelt July 05 2014 at 1:24 PM

Then go live in some dictatorship ran country where the only sport and thing going for them is Soccer. USA sports are the best and if you don't like them or being here go the F away.

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Feng July 04 2014 at 6:16 PM

Go Brazil!

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james July 04 2014 at 7:51 PM

What a joke FIFA is...this gane was a sham...the refs were an extra man for Brazil...As long as FIFA has all their darlings advancing,,,,Brazil, Germany, Argentina....God forbid an up and comer like Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico or Chile gets in there, irt would be a tragedy... FIFA is barley above WWF for legitimacy...but then again what do you expect with a bunch of corrupt Euros running things...The saddest thing is all the countries know the deal and accept place in the order of things

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2 replies
jeanethr james July 04 2014 at 8:58 PM

True!! The first half of the game, Colombia basically played against the referee- So sad. I truly believe that money talks-is not about a fair game anymore-Brazil should be ashamed of the game cause in reality they did not win-

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michaelobrien5 james July 05 2014 at 9:51 AM

Most of the guys at the top of FIFA are not Europeans.

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Colleen's Screen July 04 2014 at 7:21 PM

Please! When is this testosterone display going to be over? Enough already. It's a game...move on..

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3 replies
eoramz July 04 2014 at 6:50 PM

Wait for the Copa America 2015 in Chile and 2016 hosted by the USA. Although it has not the same importance but it can strength the American teams.

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iwantoworkforyou July 04 2014 at 6:48 PM

That was a beautiful game. David Ruiz was spectacular. So sorry Nemar was injured.

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hagman3926 July 04 2014 at 6:40 PM

We are sick to death of soccer

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7 replies
mmtoellner July 04 2014 at 6:29 PM

I don't know about next game against to Germany. Their are playing better in This Cup...

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huntnreid July 04 2014 at 8:04 PM

I tried to watch it but it is so boring. The game lasted 95 minutes and 55 of those minutes there was a player laying on the ground acting hurt like his leg had been broke. The same player 1 minute later is up running full speed. It's like watch WWF wrestling. A bunch of whiney poor actors. Good for Brazil for winning. They have nothing else to happy about. South American players are the worst. For now on I only watch games from teams north of the equator. Bunch of babies.

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jaguara777 July 04 2014 at 7:40 PM

Bravo!

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