Brazil avoid exit in penalty shootout

14:49, Jun 29 2014
Neymar
Brazil's Neymar unsuccessfully appeals to referee Howard Webb for a foul.
Dani Alves
Brazil's Dani Alves makes a slide-tackle on Chile's Eugenio Mena.
Hulk
Hulk appeals to the assistant referee after having a goal for Brazil ruled out for a handball.
Alexis Sanchez
Chile's Alexis Sanchez waits for team-mates as he celebrates his first-half goal against Brazil.
David Luiz
David Luiz looks skyward in celebration of Brazil's first goal, which was later ruled an own-goal.
Arturo Vidal
Chile's Arturo Vidal steals a pass from in front of Brazil's Neymar.
Julio Cesar
Brazilian goalkeeper Julio Cesar makes one of his two saves in the penalty shootout.
Chile team
A nervous bunch of Chilean players line up ahead of the penalty shootout.
Julio Cesar
Brazilian players swarm to goalkeeper Julio Cesar after defeating Chile 3-2 in a penalty shootout.
Neymar
Neymar puts a penalty shot past Claudio Bravo and into the net, the winning goal in the penalty shootout.
Dirk Kuyt
Holland's Dirk Kuyt battles for the ball with Mexico's Hector Herrera during their second round match in Fortaleza.
 Arjen Robben
Dutch winger Arjen Robben rides the tackle of Mexico captain Rafael Marquez during his side's 2-1 win.
 Arjen Robben
Netherlands midfielder Wesley Sneijder fires his side's equaliser past Mexican goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa.
Robin van Persie
Netherlands striker Robin van Persie brings the ball under control.
Klaas-Jan Huntelaar
Holland striker Klaas-Jan Huntelaar celebrates scoring his side's winning goal from the penalty spot in injury time.
Klaas-Jan Huntelaar
Giovani dos Santos wheels away after putting Mexico 1-0 up against the Netherlands.
Alvaro Gonzalez
Uruguay's Alvaro Gonzalez challenges Colombia's Pablo Armero during their second round match at the Maracana in Rio de Janeiro.
James Rodriguez
James Rodriguez scores his second goal past Uruguay goalkeeper Fernando Muslera to put Colombia 2-0 up.
Cristian Rodriguez
Uruguay midfielder Cristian Rodriguez tackles Colombia's Pablo Armero during their second round match in Rio de Janeiro.
James Rodriguez
James Rodriguez celebrates scoring his and Colombia's second goal with his team-mates.
Alexander Mejia
James Rodriguez scores with a sublime volley to put Colombia 1-0 up against South American rivals Uruguay.
James Rodriguez
James Rodriguez scores with a sublime volley to put Colombia 1-0 up against South American rivals Uruguay.
Bryan Ruiz
Costa Rica's Bryan Ruiz celebrates scoring the opening goal in their second round match with Greece in Recife.
Joel Campbell
Costa Rica's Joel Campbell and Greece's Konstantinos Manolas compete for the ball.
Oscar Duarte
Costa Rica's Oscar Duarte (second left) is shown a red card after his second bookable offence by referee Benjamin Williams.
Bryan Ruiz
Costa Rica captain Bryan Ruiz (second right) scores his team's first goal past Greek goalkeeper Orestis Karnezis.
Cristian Gamboa
Costa Rica's Cristian Gamboa slides in to halt the progress of Greece's Jose Cholevas.
Giorgos Samaras
Greece striker Giorgos Samaras controls the ball under the close attentions of Costa Rica's Oscar Duarte.
Theofanis Gekas
Greek midfielder Theofanis Gekas sees his penalty kick saved by Costa Rican goalkeeper Keylor Navas.
Michael Umana
Costa Rica’s Michael Umana fires the winning penalty past Greece goalkeeper Orestis Karnezis during the penalty shootout.
Yeltsin Tejeda
Costa Rica’s Yeltsin Tejeda celebrates with team-mates after defeating Greece in a penalty shootout.
Raphael Varane
Raphael Varane of France controls the ball against Ahmed Musa of Nigeria during their clash at Estadio Nacional in Brasilia, Brazil.
Vincent Enyeama
Nigeria's Vincent Enyeama (right) checks on teammate Ogenyi Onazi as he lies on the pitch after a challenge against France.
Blaise Matuidi
France's Blaise Matuidi (14) and Mathieu Valbuena celebrate after winning their World Cup round of 16 game against Nigeria at the Brasilia national stadium in Brasilia.
Rio Mavuba
France's Mathieu Valbuena and Rio Mavuba (right) celebrate after winning their World Cup round of 16 game against Nigeria.
John Obi Mikel
John Obi Mikel of Nigeria challenges Paul Pogba of France during their round of 16 match at Estadio Nacional in Brasilia, Brazil.
Raphael Varane
France's Raphael Varane is hit by the ball in the face beside Nigeria's Emmanuel Emenike (left).
Sofiane Feghouli
Algeria's Sofiane Feghouli is consoled by teammate Djamel Mesbah (back) after their loss to Germany at the Beira Rio stadium in Porto Alegre, Brazil.
Thomas Mueller
Thomas Mueller of Germany attempts a shot against Rais M'Bolhi of Algeria during the round of 16 match between Germany and Algeria at Beira-Rio Stadium in Porto Alegre, Brazil.
Jerome Boateng
Jerome Boateng and Per Mertesacker of Germany celebrate their team's second goal in extra time against Algeria.
Mesut Ozil
Germany's Mesut Ozil celebrates scoring his side's second goal during extra time against Algeria at the World Cup.
Mehdi Lacen
Germany's Bastian Schweinsteiger (left) fights for the ball with Algeria's Mehdi Lacen during extra time round of 16 game at the Beira Rio stadium in Porto Alegre.
Yacine Brahimi
Yacine Brahimi of Algeria controls the ball against Mesut Oezil (left) and Sami Khedira of Germany.
Marcos Rojo and Josif Drmic
Argentina's Marcos Rojo jostles with Switzerland's Josif Drmic for possession in Sao Paulo.
Kevin De Bruyne
Belgium's Kevin De Bruyne raises his arms in celebration as he watches his strike roll into the net.
Kevin De Bruyne
Belgium's Romelu Lukaku and Kevin De Bruyne celebrate a goal in their round of 16 knockout clash against USA.
Kevin De Bruyne
Belgium's Divock Origi throws himself into the goal net, behind USA goalkeeper Tim Howard after narrowly missing a strike.
Angel Di Maria
Argentina's Angel Di Maria sends his love to the crowd while celebrating scoring against Switzerland in the round of 16.
Angel Di Maria
Switzerland's Valon Behrami jumps for the ball next to Argentina's Gonzalo Higuain.

Brazil goalkeeper Julio Cesar kept the hosts' hopes of World Cup glory alive on Saturday (local time), saving two spot-kicks in a shootout against Chile to send them into the last eight 3-2 on penalties following a pulsating 1-1 draw after extra time.

Four years to the day since Brazil eliminated Chile at the same stage of the 2010 tournament, they did it again when Gonzalo Jara crashed his spot-kick against the post after Cesar had twice denied the battling Chileans.

Man-of-the-match Cesar, heavily criticised four years ago after Brazil's World Cup exit to the Netherlands, also made an outstanding save in the second half of normal time as the five-times champions moved unconvincingly into a quarter-final against Uruguay or Colombia.

David Luiz had put Brazil ahead after 18 minutes but Alexis Sanchez equalised for battling Chile before halftime and the host nation watched with bated breath as Brazil were on the brink of elimination after Willian and Hulk had failed to convert their spot-kicks.

Fortunately for Brazil, Cesar also saved penalties from Mauricio Pinilla and Alexis before Jara's doomed attempt.

"It was complicated," Cesar said. "The pressure of representing Brazil and playing at home is really great. We played well in the first half but after Chile equalised they got into the game."

"My team mates gave me support and strength. My big dream is that Brazil have a party," said the keeper after helping avoid Brazil's first home defeat in a competitive game since 1975.

For Chile it was a bitter end to a promising World Cup after beating holders Spain in the group stage to cement their status as tournament dark horses.

They failed, however, to exorcise their Brazilian demons once again and fell to them at the same stage as in 1998 and 2010, the last two times they were in the tournament.

They have never managed to beat Brazil at home and have won just seven of 69 games against them.

The Brazilians, who have now eliminated their fellow South Americans in four World Cups including in the 1962 semi-finals in Chile, set a blistering pace and Marcelo took a first crack at goal with a volley that sailed wide.

Chile quickly lost the battle in midfield but their defence kept tournament joint top scorer Neymar in check.

They were helpless, though, when Neymar whipped in a corner in the 18th minute, Thiago Silva headed it on and Luiz, with what looked like some help from Chile's Jara, bundled it in for his first international goal in his 40th appearance.

POURING FORWARD

With the small red patches of Chile fans in the Mineirao stadium swallowed up by a vast sea of yellow shirts, five-times champions Brazil kept pouring forward and Neymar should have done better when he raced clear, only to drive a low shot wide.

Chile, however, levelled 14 minutes later after making the most of a throw-in mix-up between Hulk and Marcelo to send Alexis into the box and the forward drilled the ball in to stun the crowd into temporary silence.

Neymar went agonisingly close with a header that scraped past the post and controlled a superb deep cross-field ball to set up Fred who fired over.

Dani Alves tested Claudio Bravo with a thundering long-range effort but the Chile keeper did well to tip it over the bar.

Brazil, who had won nine of their previous 10 games against Chile, thought they had scored again early in the second half when Hulk controlled a deep cross and scuffed the ball in but referee Howard Webb booked the forward for handball.

With the clock ticking and Brazil getting more nervous, the Chileans felt confident they could pull off a huge upset, similar to Brazil's shock defeat in the 1950 World Cup final against Uruguay, known as 'Maracanazo'.

Cesar pulled off a sensational save to deny Charles Aranguiz from point-blank range in a scintillating game in front of 58,000 spectators in which one wrong pass would potentially prove costly.

Chile, running on empty in extra time, almost snatched a dramatic last-minute winner when Pinilla rattled the crossbar with a tremendous shot but Brazil survived the scare with their fans looking to the skies and praying before the penalties started..

"That near goal right at the end has been really hard for us," Chile coach Jorge Sampaoli told reporters.

"If we had scored, we would have made history for ever. It would have been the 'Mineirazo'. We so nearly won," he said.

Luiz, Marcelo and Neymar converted their penalties and although Willian missed the target and Hulk's effort was saved, Cesar denied Pinilla and Alexis and when Jara sent his effort against the inside of the post the stadium erupted in celebration.

"It's at time like this you get your support from friends and team mates and thanks to Julio who made great saves," Hulk said.

"God willing we will go to the end and make the final. We suffered but we made it. We knew this would be a very hard game, it went to extra time but even with cramps we ran till the end."

Brazil has reached the quarterfinals at the last five World Cups. Chile has not advanced past the second round since it hosted the 1962 tournament.

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Reuters