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Brazil Suffers National Humiliation in 7-1 Germany Defeat

Back, a long time ago, before the Brazil-Germany World Cup semi-final even began, there was a saying:

“God is Brazilian” people used to say to one another, innocently.

But after yersterday's 7-1 blowout loss to Germany, that faith was lost.

The first factor, obviously, was that Brazil was missing two key players: Neymar, its star striker, and Thiago Silva, its captain and defensive linchpin. Without Neymar, it was hard to see where Brazil was going to get goals. Without Silva, there were question marks about whether it could keep out the Germans.

Even allowing for the Brazilian team being weakened, though, its performance was shockingly bad. In eighteen crazy minutes, during which Germany scored five times, Brazil’s defense broke down completely, failing to do the most basic chores, such as clearing its lines and closing down opposing players. Whether this was the result of personal indiscipline or the failure of its coach, Luiz Felipe Scolari, to impose a coherent match plan will be one of the big postgame talking points. Make no mistake: in a soccer-addled country like Brazil, this will be viewed as a national humiliation.

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