Inspired by a hat-trick from wide man Philipe Coutinho, Brazil registered their first victory of the Copa America Centenario after a resounding 7-1 victory over a hapless Haiti outfit. Meanwhile, the second game of Group B saw its fair share of drama with a 2-2 draw between Ecuador and Peru.

After playing out a drab stalemate against Ecuador, the Selecao registered their first win of the tournament in style, demolishing Haiti by a 7-1 scoreline. Philippe Coutinho, Raphael Augusto, Jonas, Gabriel and Lucas Lima were among the goal scorers on the day as Brazil moved into pole position in Group B. James Marcelin’s strike only proved to be a consolation as Haiti were knocked out of the competition.

In the other game of the day, Ecuador fought their way back from two goals down to draw 2-2. Enner Valencia and Miler Bolanos scored for Ecuador after Christian Cueva and Edison Flores put Peru into a two-goal lead.

The results mean that Brazil and Peru are now level on points atop Group B, with Ecuador playing catch up in 3rd position.

Brazil 7-1 Haiti

A confident and adept Brazil side performed perfectly well without the services of their lethal striker Neymar, as they showcased an attacking spectacle at the Camping World Stadium in Orlando, Florida. Philippe Coutinho stepped up to the party and filled in for his compatriot, scoring a sublime hat-trick. It seemed the Haitian side were overwhelmed by the occasion, and failed to show up in what was a must-win game. Alisson Becker was rarely called into action in the Brazil goal, with the opposition attackers failing to mark their authority over the Selecao defence.

With just 14 minutes into the contest, Brazil scored their first. Coutinho shrugged off two opposing defenders before coolly slotting home the ball from distance. Soon, the Liverpool midfielder found the back of the net again after Jonas set-up a tap-in for him. Things went from bad to worse for Haiti as they conceded another in the 35th minute. Renato Augusto was the beneficiary of some puerile goalkeeping by Haiti stopper Johny Placide, who threw away possession only to cost his side a third goal. The score at the break was 3-0 in favour of Dunga’s Brazil side.

More of the same in the second period as Brazil picked up what they left off in the first. In the 59th minute, Gabriel added a 4th after another piece of dismal defending by Haiti. Shortly, Lucas Lima scored with one of his first few touches – a composed one-on-one finish. With the score at 5-0, Haiti pulled one back through James Marcelin before Renato Augusto added another to make it 6-1. In the dying seconds of the game, Coutinho completed a memorable hat-trick as he drove in another long range effort to make it seven for Brazil.

 

Ecuador 2-2 Peru

Another exciting encounter saw Ecuador take on Group B leaders Peru. Peru began the game strongly by scoring two early goals, but failed to maintain their cushion and ended up succumbing to the pressure from the opposing forwards.

Peru found themselves two goals to the better within the first 14 minutes. Christian Cueva put the Peruvians in the lead in the 5th minute, taking a beautiful spin before unleashing the effort on goal. Moments later, Edison Flores doubled the advantage, lashing in on a set-piece played from the half-way line by Juan Paredes. Peru looked set on going into half-time with their two goal lead intact, but Enner Valencia had other ideas. The West Ham United forward fired home an impressive volley beating keeper Pedro Gallese all ends up, pulling a vital goal back before the break.

Ecuador's Enner Valencia controls the ball during the Copa America Centenario football tournament match in Glendale, Arizona, United States, on June 8, 2016. / AFP / ALFREDO ESTRELLA (Photo credit should read ALFREDO ESTRELLA/AFP/Getty Images)

Ecuador’s Enner Valencia controls the ball during the Copa America Centenario football tournament match in Glendale, Arizona, United States, on June 8, 2016. (Photo credit: ALFREDO ESTRELLA/AFP/Getty Images)

Ecuador began the second half as a more spirited and energetic side. They began to press higher up the pitch and were awarded their equalizer only three minutes after the restart. Miler Bolanos was the goal scorer this time round, finding himself on the right end of Jefferson Montero’s cross into the box. But despite late drama in the game with Ecuador defender Eduardo Achiller being sent-off, the scoreline remained unchanged and both teams picked up a point each.

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