Brazil wins group despite 1-0 loss to Cameroon at World Cup

Dec 1, 2022, 11:00 PM | Updated: Dec 2, 2022, 2:43 pm
Brazil's Neymar looks on prior the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at t...

Brazil's Neymar looks on prior the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

(AP Photo/Andre Penner)

              Brazil's Neymar looks on prior the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)
            
              Cameroon's Tolo Nouhou, on the ground, takes his place on the wall before a free kick during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)
            
              Brazil's Bremer controls the ball during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Moises Castillo)
            
              Cameroon's goalkeeper Devis Epassy celebrates at the end of the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)
            
              Cameroon players celebrate after scoring the opening goal during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)
            
              A group of players jumps for a header during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)
            
              Cameroon's Vincent Aboubakar celebrates after scoring the opening goal during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)
            
              Cameroon's Vincent Aboubakar, left, celebrates after scoring the opening goal during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)
            
              Brazilian players greet each other at the end of the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. Cameroon won 1-0. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)
            
              Brazil's Bremer controls the ball during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Moises Castillo)
            
              Cameroon's Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa, left, battles for the ball with Brazil's Fred during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)
            
              Cameroon players celebrate after scoring the opening goal during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)
            
              A group of players jumps for a header during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)
            
              Brazilian players greet each other at the end of the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. Cameroon won 1-0. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)
            
              Cameroon's defensive wall jumps to block a free kick of Brazil's Dani Alves, left, during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)
            
              Cameroon's Tolo Nouhou, on the ground, takes his place on the wall before a free kick during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)
            
              Brazil's Gabriel Jesus, front, and Cameroon's Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa fight for he ball during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Moises Castillo)
            
              Cameroon's goalkeeper Devis Epassy celebrates at the end of the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)
            
              Brazil's Neymar looks on prior the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)
            
              Brazil's Bremer controls the ball during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Moises Castillo)
            
              Brazil's Gabriel Jesus, front, and Cameroon's Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa fight for he ball during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Moises Castillo)
            
              Cameroon's Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa, left, battles for the ball with Brazil's Fred during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)
            
              Brazil's Dani Alves, right, heads the ball past Cameroon's Moumi Ngamaleu during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)
            
              Soccer fans hold a giant Brazilian flag with a picture of Brazilian soccer legend Pele with a message reading in English "Pele, Get well soon," during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)
            
              Brazil's Rodrygo, center, vies for the ball with Cameroon's Jean-Charles Castelletto, right, during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)
            
              Brazil's Rodrygo falls to the ground in a clash with Cameroon's Enzo Ebosse, left, and Collins Fai during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)
            
              Brazil's Gabriel Martinelli, right, vies for the ball with Cameroon's Collins Fai during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)
            
              Cameroon's Tolo Nouhou tries to block a shot from Brazil's Fred, right, during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)
            
              Brazil's Rodrygo, left, fights for the ball against Cameroon's Pierre Kunde during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)
            
              Cameroon's Tolo Nouhou, left, jumps to a ball with Brazil's Antony, right, during the World Cup group G soccer match between Cameroon and Brazil, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Friday, Dec. 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

LUSAIL, Qatar (AP) — Vincent Aboubakar’s powerful header was historic for Cameroon and Africa at the World Cup.

The stoppage-time goal didn’t help Cameroon reach the round of 16 despite the team’s 1-0 win over Brazil’s reserves on Friday. But it handed the five-time champions their first group-stage loss in 24 years, and gave Africa its first win against the Seleçao at the tournament.

Aboubakar was sent off after a second booking for taking off his shirt during his celebration, leading him to miss the final minutes of his team’s big victory.

“I didn’t even realize that this was such a historic victory,” Cameroon coach Rigobert Song said. “We are one of the African countries that played the most World Cups, and now we’ve beaten Brazil.”

Brazil had won its previous seven matches against African opponents at the World Cup.

“We can be proud of what we’ve done tonight,” Cameroon goalkeeper Devis Epassy said. “We worked very hard. Unfortunately, though, we didn’t qualify, and that’s why are are not too happy.”

Brazil, which had already reached the knockout stage after victories over Serbia and Switzerland, still finished first in Group H. It ended with six points, the same as Switzerland, but the South Americans had a better goal difference. Cameroon ended with four points and Serbia had one.

“The loss doesn’t eliminate us, but we have to learn from it,” midfielder Fabinho said. “The objective was to finish first in the group and we did.”

Brazil will face South Korea in the round of 16, while the Swiss will play against Portugal.

It was the 11th straight time Brazil won its World Cup group. It had won 17 straight group games since a 2-1 loss to Norway in 1998 in France. It had lost only one of its last 29 group matches at the tournament.

Cameroon hadn’t won any of its last nine World Cup matches, with eight losses and a draw — against Ireland in its opening game at the 2002 tournament.

Coach Tite rested nearly all of his regular starters and made 10 changes from the win against Switzerland on Monday.

Brazil was still without the injured Neymar, but the star forward was at Lusail Stadium to watch the match with his teammates.

Both teams created some good scoring chances, but couldn’t capitalize on them until Aboubakar’s winner off a right-flank cross by Jerome Ngom Mbekeli, who had entered the match in the 86th minute.

The Cameroon captain threw his shirt to the ground near the corner flag and waited for his teammates as they rushed toward him. He then left the field after the referee showed him the red card.

Brazil finally conceded an attempt on target after not having done so in the first two matches.

Cameroon, which opened with a 1-0 loss to Switzerland, had endured a small crisis after its 3-3 draw with Serbia, with goalkeeper Andre Onana being sent home for disciplinary reasons after a dispute with coach Song.

ALVES’ RECORD

With his start Friday, the 39-year-old Dani Alves became the oldest Brazilian to play at a World Cup, ahead of 38-year-old central defender Thiago Silva, Brazil’s captain in Qatar. Alves’ last game at a World Cup had been in the round of 16 of the 2014 tournament in Brazil.

NEYMAR THE STAR

Neymar joined his teammates at the stadium for the first time since injuring his right ankle in Brazil’s opener against Switzerland.

He wasn’t limping as he got off the team’s bus and even played with the ball as his teammates warmed up. The crowd cheered loudly when the stadium’s big screen showed him singing the national anthem before the match. He later sat in the stands behind the bench, with fans trying to get close and take photos of him.

REMEMBERING PELÉ

Brazilian fans showed their support for soccer great Pelé, who is hospitalized in Sao Paulo with a respiratory infection.

They displayed a banner with the image of Pelé holding a soccer ball behind one of the goals, and opened a large flag with an image of the Brazil great and the words: “Pelé. Get well soon.” One fan in the stands held up a jersey with a photo of Pelé on it.

BRAZIL INJURIES

Brazil left back Alex Telles, who was replacing injured regular starter Alex Sandro, had to be replaced with a right knee injury, as did Gabriel Jesus. Both will undergo tests Saturday.

___

Tales Azzoni on Twitter: http://twitter.com/tazzoni

___

AP World Cup coverage: https://apnews.com/hub/world-cup and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

NASCAR Cup Series drivers Bubba Wallace (23) and Alex Bowman (48) participate in a practice session...
Associated Press

Ally Financial expands NASCAR spend with 2 new partnerships

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Ally Financial has expanded its growing portfolio as a top NASCAR sponsor with a deal to become the official bank of the stock car series and NASCAR-owned race tracks. The multiyear deal was announced Sunday ahead of NASCAR’s exhibition extravaganza at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum and led to the creation […]
1 day ago
Boston Bruins right wing David Pastrnak celebrates with teammate Pavel Zacha (18) after scoring a g...
Associated Press

Bruins rolling, rest of NHL making final push for playoffs

SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) — Bruce Cassidy’s Vegas Golden Knights lost eight of 10 games going into the All-Star break after leading the Pacific Division at the midway point of the NHL season. They’re still safely in a playoff spot in the Western Conference, but they can’t keep it up. “We’re still in a good position […]
1 day ago
FILE - Kansas City Chiefs owner Clark Hunt holds the Super Bowl trophy during a rally in Kansas Cit...
Associated Press

Chiefs’ Hunt, Eagles’ Lurie behind Super Bowl-winning teams

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Clark Hunt proudly held aloft the AFC championship trophy bearing his father’s name, the one signifying that his Kansas City Chiefs were headed back to the Super Bowl for the third time in four years, and reflected that not so long ago, success seemed elusive. It had been 50 years […]
1 day ago
Atlantic Division's Andrei Vasilevskiy of the Tampa Bay Lightning (88) and Aleksander Barkov, of th...
Associated Press

Panthers hope All-Star weekend showcased team’s investment

SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) — Matthew Tkachuk is under contract to the Florida Panthers for much of the next decade. So is fellow All-Star Aleksander Barkov. And right there are two compelling reasons for players to join the Panthers in the coming years. The last few days might have helped the recruiting pitch, too. Many of […]
1 day ago
FILE - North Texas football coach Todd Dodge, left, speaks to the media in Denton, Texas, Tuesday, ...
Associated Press

Mahomes, Hurts latest Texas prep QBs on Super Bowl stage

DALLAS (AP) — Texas high school quarterbacks guru Todd Dodge got what he wanted when Kansas City’s Patrick Mahomes and Jalen Hurts of Philadelphia won their conference championship games. “I really like Joe Burrow,” Dodge said with a chuckle in reference to Cincinnati’s star quarterback, “but I’m not going to root for Joe Burrow over […]
1 day ago
Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic, right, drives to the rim as Atlanta Hawks forward Onyeka Okongw...
Associated Press

Nuggets beat Hawks 128-108, tie Boston for NBA’s best record

DENVER (AP) — Jamal Murray scored a season-high 41 points, Nikola Jokic had his 18th triple-double of the season and the Denver Nuggets won their third straight game, beating the Atlanta Hawks 128-108 on Saturday night. Jokic finished with 14 points, 18 rebounds and 10 assists and recorded the 94th regular-season triple-double of his career. […]
1 day ago
Brazil wins group despite 1-0 loss to Cameroon at World Cup