Photo: Brazilian National team
Leandro Damiao slammed two goals into the net to wrap up a 3-0 victory over South Korea Tuesday in the soccer semifinal at the 2012 London Games, moving the Brazilian men’s team on to its third final in the only important tournament it has never won, that of the Olympic Games.
The other team to qualify for the final, Mexico, has never gotten further than the semifinals in any previous Olympic competition.
Damiao, as in the quarterfinal against Honduras, was a key player in the victory of the Brazilians, who, despite such a lopsided score, did not succeed in convincing the 70,000 fans at Manchester’s Old Trafford about the quality of their soccer.
But Brazil makes use of its chances like no one else and did not allow the opportunities offered Tuesday by the Korean goalkeeper to escape them.
Though the South Americans took a 1-0 lead on Romulo’s tally in the 38th minute, the Asian side came out for the second half intent on forcing the battle and looked not at all the inferior side.
But the Koreans met their match in Damiao and his two scores in minutes 57 and 64, which ended their hopes and made him insurmountable as top scorer of the tourney.
Mexico and five-time World Cup winner Brazil will battle for the gold on Saturday at London’s Wembley Stadium.