USA 0 Brazil 4: Marta's masterclass humbles US

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The Independent Football

Brazil reached the final of the women's World Cup for the first time here yesterday and in doing so ended the United States' push for a third title.

The Americans' run of unbeaten games ended at 51 over almost three years as they were overpowered. Brazil went ahead through an own goal after 20 minutes, and Marta doubled the lead soon after. Cristiane and Marta added two more in the second half.

The US played the final 45 minutes with 10 players after midfielder Shannon Boxx was sent off in first-half injury time for a contentious second yellow card. Brazil now face Germany on Sunday in Shanghai.

Brazil went ahead in the 20th minute. Formiga sent in a corner, which bounced just short of the goal, and midfielder Leslie Osborne, attempting to head the ball away, could only nod it into the net past goalkeeper Briana Scurry.

Seven minutes later Brazil's creative striker Marta struck her first, evading half-a-dozen opponents before cracking in a left-footed shot from 15 yards .

Forced to push forwards in the second half, the US left themselves exposed at the back. Maycon, Daniela and Cristiane all went close in the opening stages after the restart before Cristiane made it 3-0 in the 56th minute, beating Scurry with a left-footed shot when put clear with only the goalkeeper to beat.

Brazil's final flurry came in the 79th minute when Marta tricked her way past US defender Tina Ellertson on the left, raced into the penalty area, dummied another challenge and beat the hapless Scurry.

US: Scurry; Rampone, Whitehill, Boxx, O'Reilly (Ellertson, 60), Osborne, Lilly, Lopez (Lloyd, h-t), Markgraf (Dalmy, 74), Chalupny, Wambach.

Brazil: Andreia; Elaine, Aline, Tania, Renata Costa,Daniela, Formiga, Maycon, Marta, Cristiane, Ester.

Referee: N Petignat (Switzerland).