18 June, 2018
ROSTOV-ON-DON, Russia-Before Brazil's World Cup opener, manager Tite explained how unimportant it was for Brazil, the country that seemed like it need a purifying victory more than any, to win this game against Switzerland.
Philippe Coutinho gave Brazil the lead with a stunning first-half strike, but they were denied an opening win.
Brazil's 7-1 semifinal defeat on home soil to Germany has clouded the national team ever since, but with a healthy Neymar surrounded by a rejuvenated cast that includes Gabriel Jesus, Roberto Firmino, Philippe Coutinho and Marcelo, Brazil has eyes on a record sixth World Cup title.
However, Brazil failed to build on their lead as Thiago Silva and Jesus headed off target from risky corners and were made to pay early in the second-half.
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But Switzerland successfully resisted late Brazilian pressure to earn a point in their opening Group E fixture. The match was pretty much all Brazil from the beginning, but outside of its lone goal, the ball just didn't want to go in.
Earlier, Serbia beat Los Ticos 1-0 to move to the top of Group F.
Brazil went all out in pursuit of a victor and came agonisingly close to finding it but had to settle for a point and joined fellow tournament favourites Germany, Spain and Argentina in failing to win their first game.
And deep into stoppage time Schar's outstretched leg turned a goalbound effort from Silva wide as Switzerland held out for a vital point.
They narrowly beat Northern Ireland in a playoff to get to Russian Federation, making it easy to scoff at the Schweizer Nati's No. 6 FIFA ranking in the run-up to the main event.