Former Premier League striker Dean Ashton has heaped praise on Brazil star Neymar's cheeky penalty against South Korean goalkeeper Kim Seung-gyu.
O Canarinho beat the Taegeuk Warriors 4-1 in the Round of 16 of the 2022 FIFA World Cup at the Stadium 974 on Monday (December 5) to romp into the quarterfinals. Vinicius Junior opened the scoring for Brazil with a cool finish into the top-right corner before Neymar doubled their advantage from the penalty spot.
Richarlison was brought down inside the box, and the referee quickly pointed to the spot. As is usually the case, Neymar stood over the spot kick.
In his trademark style he scampered up a few steps before a hop and a smash, senidng the ball into the bottom right corner. Seung-gyu moved slightly to his right as Neymar made the run but the forward sent the ball the other way, bamboozling the Korean custodian.
Ashton was left amazed by the Brazil No.10 and joked that he 'disrespected' Seung-gyu with his cheeky penalty kick. Speaking on talkSPORT, he said:
“The absolute disrespect of a goalkeeper from Neymar! He takes his time; he staggers; he waits and waits, waits till the goalkeeper is almost on his backside. And then rolls it into the other corner. How cool was that?”
That was Neymar's 76th international goal, putting him just one behind Pele's all-time record of 77 for the Selecao. He also equaled the 82-year-old legend's record of scoring in three World Cups for Brazil.
Richarlison then made it 3-0 around the half-hour mark before Lucas Paqueta smashed home Brazil's fourth in the 36th minute as Tite's swashbuckling team led 4-0 at half-time. Paik Seung-ho pulled one back for Korea in the 76th minute, but it was too little too late.
Brazil face Croatia in quarterfinals of 2022 FIFA World Cup
Brazil cantered into their eighth straight FIFA World Cup quarterfinal after clinically dispatching South Korea. Their reward is a date with Croatia for a place in the semis, with the Vatreni needing penalties to see off Japan earlier in the day.
O Canarinho are once again the favorites to progress, but the Vatreni have stepped up to the plate, beating Japan 3-1 on penalties after a 1-1 draw.
Brazil will feel confident of their chances with Neymar back in the fold and up and running for the tournament with his penalty. A bit of history, though - they have never lost to Croatia in four previous meetings.
The Selecao could next meet Argentina in a blockbuster last-four clash.