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Colombia and Brazil Settle for 1-1 Draw in World Cup 2018 Qualifying – Bleacher Report

Colombia's Radamel Falcao celebrates after scoring against Brazil during their 2018 World Cup football qualifier match, in Barranquilla, Colombia, on September 5, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Raul ARBOLEDA        (Photo credit should read RAUL ARBOLEDA/AFP/Getty Images)

RAUL ARBOLEDA/Getty Images

Colombia and Brazil drew 1-1 in 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification (CONMEBOL) on Tuesday, as the points were shared in Barranquilla.

Willian opened the scoring for Brazil on the stroke of half-time, as his blockbuster strike flew past goalkeeper David Ospina.

However, Radamel Falcao equalised after 56 minutes, with the hosts battling their way back into the contest in the second half.

James Rodriguez returned to the Colombian team after injury, as coach Jose Pekerman picked new Tottenham Hotspur defender Davinson Sanchez.

Neymar led the Brazilian visitors, with Roberto Firmino coming into the attack for Manchester City prodigy Gabriel Jesus.

Brazil's Willian (L) vies for the ball with Colombia's James Rodriguez during their 2018 World Cup qualifier football match in Barranquilla, Colombia, on September 5, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Luis Acosta        (Photo credit should read LUIS ACOSTA/AFP/Getty I

LUIS ACOSTA/Getty Images

The home crowd were noisy and atmospheric from the opening moments, but it was the visitors who responded to the occassion first.

Fernandinho went close as Brazil threatened, but Juan Cuadrado countered to almost steal the opener for Los Cafeteros.

Neymar and Firmino linked in attack as Brazil continued to pile on the pressure, and the hosts were struggling to meet the challenge in front of them.

Brazil finally broke the deadlock on the stroke of half-time after a magnificent strike from Willian.

The Chelsea midfielder arrived late on the edge of the box and smashed his effort into the top corner as he cut his foot across the ball.

Squawka News highlighted the score at the interval:

Brazil were once again out the traps quickly at the restart, flowing forward with menace as the attempted to double their advantage.

However, it was the hosts who struck back on terms as the Barranquilla crowd exploded into song.

Falcao was the hero of the hour, placing his deadly header into the bottom corner after a glorious cross from Santiago Arias.

Multimedia journalist Roberto Rojas commented on the goal:

Suddenly, Brazil appeared vulnerable and short of ideas. Colombia had a spell of domination, and James went close to snatching the lead as his free-kick hit the post.

The Brazilians weathered the storm as the second half progressed, and the threat reduced as the visitors looked after the ball.

Philippe Coutinho’s entrance from the bench started to drive Brazil back up the pitch, and Neymar’s snap effort whistled past the post late in the day.

Both teams appeared fatigued in the closing stages, and the sides were happy to take a point each after an emotional encounter.

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