Oporto: Deco Souza crowned a spectacular debut for Portugal with the winning goal in a 2-1 victory over his native Brazil on Saturday — their first over the south Americans since 1966.
Substitute Deco converted a set piece in the 82nd minute after Brazil’s Roberto Carlos was sent off for shoulder charging Israeli referee Alon Yefet in protest over a free-kick awarded to Portugal.
It was also trainer Luiz Felipe Scolari’s first win in charge of Portugal, and came against the team he fashioned into world champions for a record fifth time less than a year ago.
“This was not about me, but the fans, who haven’t had a win over Brazil for 37 years,” said Scolari. “That’s history, I want them to make history and to score. Moreover, I want them to have a big chance to be remembered in 2004, not just as (world youth champions) in 1991.”
Portugal took the lead in the eighth minute through Pauleta. The home side settled into a confident passing game after that, yet all the scoring chances in the remainder of the first half went to Brazil.
Rivaldo failed to score with only goalkeeper Ricardo Pereira to beat and Roberto Carlos twice hit the woodwork with powerful shots from 25 metres.
Tempers were frayed in the second half as both sides were guilty of clumsy tackles on a wet pitch. Ronaldinho levelled for Brazil in the 65th, converting a penalty after Simao Sabrosa had brought him down.