Robinho strikes as Brazil win in style

United States 0 Brazil 3

Brazil put on a vastly improved performance yesterday to beat the United States and move closer to a spot in the Confederations Cup semi-finals. Felipe Melo put Brazil ahead in the seventh minute before Robinho and Maicon scored goals that typified the traditional flair and vigour that had been absent from the South American champion's narrow opening win over Egypt.

Robinho rounded off a 20th-minute counter-attack of near-breathtaking efficiency before Maicon, who had threatened throughout, started a second-half move on the right that ended with him lifting a shot from a narrow angle over goalkeeper Tim Howard. "I like the way we played," the Brazil coach Dunga said. "We changed the ball from side to side very quickly. That helped us a lot."

The win at Loftus Versfeld Stadium gave Brazil six points in Group B, six more than the US, one of whose players was sent off for a second straight game and who are now almost certain to be eliminated from the tournament.

The US did not manage a chance until substitute Benny Feilhaber hit the bar with seven minutes left. Despite focusing before the match on Brazil's attacking full-backs, the team was unable to contend with Maicon's runs down the right and struggled throughout with the pace of the game. Maicon set up Melo's seventh-minute header and in the first half alone came close to creating another two goals after Robinho's effort, which came from a move that started with a corner kick to the US.

The sending off of midfielder Sacha Kljestan in the 57th minute for a foul on Ramires created even more space for Brazil to exploit and Maicon did so five minutes later after a move involving Ramires and Kaka. "He played the ball off before I got there and I got him in the foot," Kljestan said. "I don't know if it was a red or not but the end result is that I let my team down today.

"It surprised me because the game played on and he [the referee] took a few minutes. Someone must have talked in his ear but I don't know who."

Kljestan will now be suspended for his team's final group game against Egypt, while Brazil could bask in a win so comfortable that they could withdraw Kaka, Luis Fabiano and captain Lucio for the last 20 minutes.

Melo's header from a free-kick by Maicon was the fourth of Brazil's five tournament goals to come from a set-piece, but the five-time World Cup winners showed their famous flair for the next score.

Landon Donovan, again standing in as captain for the injured Carlos Bocanegra, tried to play a short corner to DaMarcus Beasley, but the midfielder failed to read the pass and it ran to Andre Santos to clear.

With Beasley slapping the ground in frustration, Kaka helped the ball to Ramires, who drifted out to the right and rolled a pass across the edge of the area to the onrushing Robinho, who scored with a well-placed low shot. "When they are firing on all cylinders, it might be special to watch but it's a bugger to play against," Howard said.

The United States coach, Bob Bradley, sent on Conor Casey for the second half in place of Beasley, but little changed and Howard had to make three saves in the next 10 minutes. Feilhaber and Casey both hit the bar in the last seven minutes but Brazil had done their job by then.

Brazil (4-3-1-2): Cesar; Maicon, Lucio (Luisao, 70), Miranda, Santos; Silva, Melo, Ramires; Kaka (Baptista, 69); Robinho, Luis Fabiano (Nilmar, 69).

United States (4-4-2): Howard; JBornstein, DeMerit, Onyewu, Spector; Bradley, Klejstan, Beasley (Casey, h-t), Dempsey; Donovan, Altidore (Feilhaber, 60).

Referee: M Busacca (Switzerland)

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
Mario Balotelli pictured in the win over QPR
footballInternet reacts to miss shocker for Liverpool striker
Voices
Sol Campbell near his home in Chelsea
voices
News
Kimi the fox cub
newsBurberry under fire from animal rights group - and their star, Kimi
Arts and Entertainment
Ella Henderson's first studio album has gone straight to the top of the charts
music
News
<p>Jonathan Ross</p>
<p>Jonathan Ross (or Wossy, as he’s affectionately known) has been on television and radio for an extraordinarily long time, working on a seat in the pantheon of British presenters. Hosting Friday Night with Jonathan Ross for nine years, Ross has been in everything from the video game Fable to Phineas and Ferb. So it’s probably not so surprising that Ross studied at Southampton College of Art (since rebranded Southampton Solent), a university known nowadays for its media production courses.</p>
<p>However, after leaving Solent, Ross studied History at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies, now part of the UCL, a move that was somewhat out of keeping with the rest of his career. Ross was made a fellow of the school in 2006 in recognition of his services to broadcasting.</p>
TV

Rumours that the star wants to move on to pastures new

Life and Style
fashion
News
Paul Nuttall, left, is seen as one of Ukip's key weapons in selling the party to the North of England
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Russell Brand labelled 'left-wing commie scum' by Fox News
TV
Arts and Entertainment
BBC's Antiques Roadshow uncovers a TIE fighter pilot helmet from the 1977 Star Wars film, valuing it at £50,000
TV

TV presenter Fiona Bruce seemed a bit startled by the find during the filming of Antiques Roadshow

News
people

Comedian says he 'never laughed as hard as I have writing with Rik'

Sport
Steven Caulker of QPR scores an own goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Queens Park Rangers and Liverpool
football
Arts and Entertainment
artKaren Wright tours the fair and wishes she had £11m to spare
News
i100
Life and Style
Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh been invited to take part in Women Fashion Power, a new exhibition that celebrates the way women's fashion has changed in relation to their growing power and equality over the past 150 years
fashionKirsty and Camila swap secrets about how to dress for success
Arts and Entertainment
Joy Division photographed around Waterloo Road, Stockport, near Strawberry Studios. The band are Bernard Sumner (guitar and keyboards), Stephen Morris (drums and percussion), Ian Curtis (vocals and occasional guitar), Peter Hook (bass guitar and backing vocals).
booksNew book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album
Hugh Bonneville & Peter James: 'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'

How We Met: Hugh Bonneville & Peter James

'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's heavenly crab dishes don't need hours of preparation

Bill Granger's heavenly crab recipes

Scared off by the strain of shelling a crab? Let a fishmonger do the hard work so you can focus on getting the flavours right
Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

After a remarkable conversion from reckless defender to prolific striker, Monaco's ace says he wants to make his loan deal at Old Trafford permanent
Terry Venables: Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England

Terry Venables column

Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England
The Inside Word: Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past

Michael Calvin's Inside Word

Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past