France 1 Brazil 3 (Half-time 1-1)
The Brazilian national #Football side seems to be getting some of the expected samba rhythm back into their game, after the severe shock of their 7-1 annihilation at the hands of the Germans in the World Cup in Rio, as they claimed a 3-1 success away to the French last night. Friendlies often mean very little to the sides, other than to allow the opportunity to try out new personnel and gel a combined team ethic, but one senses that Brazil are in a period of rehabilitation after the deep wounds inflicted on them in that semi-final defeat. Their seventh success in a row after the World Cup departure suggests that they are hungry to climb their way back to the very top of the game in due course.
France started the better in Paris though, taking the lead on 21 minutes through Raphael Varane's header, following a corner from Mathieu Valbuena. With Atletico Madrid's blonde-rinsed Antoine Griezmann looking as lively as ever up front, they caused the Brazil back line one or two further issues, especially when their Spanish export fizzed in a shot that the goalkeeper decided was close enough to the corner of the goal to require palming away. It was probably going just wide of the target, but better safe than sorry.
The visitors were playing neat football of their own and one such sharp interchange of passes brought them level 5 minutes before the break, as Chelsea's Oscar prodded the ball through the keeper Steve Mandanda's legs and into the net. The move was typical of the South American flair that fans have come to love and admire over the years, with at least three nutmegs of opposition players involved, including the goalkeeper at the end of it. Hoffenheim's Roberto Firmino was credited with an assist for his killer final pass.
Twelve minutes after the interval the away side took the lead. Barcelona's Neymar was released down the left by another Chelsea star, Willian and he lashed a powerfully driven shot home at the near post from a tight angle.
There was no way back for the French when Brazil scored a third goal from a Luiz Gustavo header with 21 minutes remaining.
Both France and Brazil will be back in international friendly action on Sunday, when France entertain Denmark and the Brazilians face fellow South American opposition in the form of Chile. #Celebrities