Team Brazil fares better than it has in decades at the World Cup
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Maybe the Samba spread to their feet. In a pulsating first week at the World Cup, the goals piled up in a barrage of offense that hadn’t been seen in nearly 50 years.
The early games are often turgid defensive battles, but the first 18 matches of this World Cup averaged 3 goals per game–a big jump from the 2.27 average for all the 2010 Cup’s games. The tone was set early, when local boys Brazil routed Croatia 3-1. It was quickly bested by Robin van Persie’s luscious lob of a header, which sparked Holland’s 5-1 overpowering of Spain. (Five days later, the defending champs were eliminated after losing to Chile.) Germany’s 4-0 demolition of Portugal completed the Iberian implosion.