Brazil held to second straight goalless draw at Olympics

Brasilia, Aug 8 (IANS) Hosts Brazil were held to their second consecutive goalless draw by Iraq and are in danger of an early elimination from the Rio Olympics men’s football tournament.

The hosts also drew 0-0 with South Africa on Thursday and were roundly booed by the 65,000-strong crowd here on Sunday as they failed to break down a stubborn Iraq side, reports Xinhua.

They will next face Group A leaders Denmark to decide their fate. Denmark downed South Africa 1-0 in the second round of the group games. Denmark, who drew with Iraq 0-0 in the first mnatch, have four points after two matches. Brazil have two after two games.

Iraq relied in a solid defence to deny Brazil a success. In the 12th minute, the Asian side almost broke the deadlock when Mohanad Abdulraheem’s header found the crossbar.

The hosts became impatient when they saw Iraq players deliberately delaying the game.

Brazil came close to scoring when a volley by Renato Augusto touched the crossbar in the 43th minute.

Iraq’s defence was tighter in the second half. Brazil dominated the game but couldn’t transform their advantages into a victory.

“We weren’t in good shape, and I tried my best but luck was not on my side,” said Augusto after the match on Sunday.

“We have to win the third game, otherwise we may be eliminated from the tournament,” he added.

Portugal snatched their second consecutive win to advance to the quarter-finals, beating Honduras 2-1 in Group D. In the same group, Argentina beat Algeria 2-1, thereby eliminating the beaten team.

In Group C, Germany and South Korea played out an entertaining 3-3 draw, while Mexico smashed Fiji 5-1.

In Group B, Nigeria are on top with a 1-0 victory over Sweden. Japan tied 2-2 with Colombia.

–IANS

sam/vt

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