Tite thrilled to share the joy as Brazil reach World Cup
Mar 30 2017 by Marjorie Miles
Thirty more teams will join Brazil, and hosts Russian Federation, at next summer's World Cup.
The Brazilians had moved to the brink of qualification after defeating Paraguay 3-0 in Sao Paulo earlier Tuesday.
Philippe Coutinho scored a first-half opener against Paraguay, with Neymar and Marcelo adding insurance in the second period.
Brazil have won all 3 home World Cup qualifiers against Paraguay this century though.
But on Tuesday, if Brazil beat Paraguay in Sao Paulo, and Chile and both Ecuador and Chile lose their games, the five-time World Cup-winners will have secured their berth in Russian Federation.
Argentina had been rocked just hours before kick-off after confirmation that Barcelona superstar Messi had been hit with a four-match ban for swearing at an official in last week's 1-0 win over Chile. Among the ten teams in the fray, the top four teams at the end of the qualifying round automatically qualify for the World Cup while the fifth placed team proceeds to the inter-confederation playoffs. "Nowadays I only think about playing football, I am better in every aspect", Neymar said in a press conference, alongside Tite. In 13 matches "pentakampeony" scored nine wins, three games ended in a draw and only one lost.
Argentina's Lucas Pratto sits on the pitch during a 2018 World Cup qualifying soccer soccer match against Bolivia in La Paz, Bolivia, on Tuesday, March 28, 2017. However, Tite's team are focused and determined enough to win as they push their limits farther into their goal of reaching the World Cup finals.
The FC Barcelona player has been banned for four global matches for directing "insulting words" at an assistant referee during last Thursday's 1-0 win over Chile.
Against Paraguay, Brazil were already in party mode, with Coutinho opening the scoring on 34 minutes following a deft one-two with China-based midfielder Paulinho.
Matters became more hard for the hosts when Luis Caicedo was sent off for a second yellow card just past the hour mark and, although they missed chances for a third, Colombia's victory always looked assured.
They are just the second side to reach Russian Federation, after the hosts, with over 15 months to go until the next installment of the eagerly awaited tournament.