Brazil’s inability to score against South Africa was just a bad day at the office and the hosts will work hard to improve before their next game against Iraq, several players said on Thursday.
“Today we failed in the goal-scoring category so we need to get better,” said defender Marquinhos.
“We tried, we had the character to keep plugging away, but unfortunately we just couldn’t score.”
The 0-0 draw was a major disappointment for the home side against a team reduced to 10 men just before the hour mark.
Brazil, who have never won the Olympic gold, included high profile players such as Neymar, Gabriel Jesus and Paris Saint-Germain defender Marquinhos as they try to break that duck.
But while they controlled the game, especially after Mothobi Mvala was sent off for a second booking, they could not score.
Gabriel Jesus was the biggest culprit when he hit the post with the goal gaping from two yards out and the new Manchester City player made no excuses for his glaring miss.
“I am disappointed that I could not score, it was a mistake and that shouldn’t happen,” he said. “Now we need to focus on Sunday and not make mistakes.
“We were not anxious, I think the opposite was the case,” he added when asked if opening day nerves played a part in Brazil’s failure to grab all three points. “We were overconfident. That happens, it is football.”
Some fans in the 69 000 crowd at the National stadium booed the team as they left the field, but coach Rogerio Micale said the reaction would serve to steel his young charges.
“The support of the fans is very important to the team,” Micale told a news conference. “We know it is difficult in any competition, but if we have the support of the fans it will make things easier and help our players. But we need to be prepared for adverse circumstances. And it means we will be more focused in the future.” – Supersport.com