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Richarlison inspires Brazil, Spain held by Egypt

July 23, 2021 4:36 am
Brazil players celebrate after scoring one of their goals [Source: Olympics/Twitter]

Everton striker Richarlison scored a first-half hat-trick as Brazil’s men began their Olympic campaign with a 4-2 victory over Germany.

In a repeat of the 2016 Olympic gold-medal match, the defending champions raced into a commanding lead despite Matheus Cunha having a penalty saved.

Richarlison scored on the rebound inside seven minutes, before heading home a second and curling in his third inside 30 minutes.

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Germany put up more of a fight after the break as goals from Nadiem Amiri and Ragnar Ache made it 3-2, making it a nervous finish for Brazil.

But Bayer Leverkusen striker Paulinho finished brilliantly in injury time to make it 4-2 and put the game beyond the Germans.

Also in Group D, AC Milan midfielder Franck Kessie scored in Ivory Coast’s 2-1 win over Saudi Arabia.

In another match, Spain were held to a goalless draw by Egypt in the opening game of the men’s competition despite the inclusion of Euro 2020 young player of the tournament Pedri.

A frustrating result for Spain was compounded by an ankle injury to Real Madrid’s Dani Ceballos as they struggled to break Egypt down.

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