Brazil reached the Copa America final after a first-half goal from Lucas Paqueta, gave them a 1-0 win over Peru.
The semi-final was a repeat of the last final, two years ago, when a Brazil team shorn of the injured Neymar also triumphed on home soil.
The Selecao will play either Lionel Messi’s Argentina or Colombia in the title decider at Rio de Janeiro’s iconic Maracana stadium.
Brazil have won the Copa America every time they hosted the tournament and in the early part of match against Peru showed exactly why they are favourites to do so again.
GOLAÇO! Lucas Paquetá recebe de Neymar e coloca a bola no fundo da rede para abrir o placar! 1×0 @cbf_futebol
— Copa América (@CopaAmerica) July 5, 2021
Lucas Paqueta scored the only goal in the entire match in the 35th-minute. With a brilliant assist, Neymar had his contribution there as well.
Neymar beat three men on the left and clipped the ball across goal for Paqueta to volley home from 10 metres.
“It was a very tough game, very hard fought,” Paqueta said. “They are a very strong side but we managed to make it through a difficult spell.”
Neymar was quick to sing his team mate’s praises and said there was more to come.
“Paqueta is a great player, he’s getting better with each game,” he added. “He had a great season with his club and here he is showing that he can be a very important player for Brazil.”
Messi is leading the race for the golden boot with four goals to his name and Neymar is second in the goal-scorers tally with two goals to his credit.
Esses foram os lances destaques do primeiro tempo
Estas fueron las acciones más destacadas del primer tiempo
— Copa América (@CopaAmerica) July 6, 2021
Peru withstood Brazil’s onslaught well for most of the game despite the loss. The hosts had 15 shots to Peru’s seven and managed to put eight on target, but only had one goal.
Brazil’s finishing will need to be better if it meets Argentina in the Copa America final.
The title match will take place Saturday, July 10 at 8 p.m. ET.