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Rodrygo and Eder Militao feature in Brazil’s 1-0 loss to Cameroon

Rodrygo earned his first start in the tournament.

Cameroon v Brazil: Group G - FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

The third and final matchday for Group G saw Brazil take on Cameroon. Tite opted to rotate heavily after Brazil already secured qualification. Rodrygo entered the line-up as an attacking midfielder and Militao got to play in his customary center back role. It wasn’t just the Real Madrid duo rotated into the line-up, all of: Gabriel Jesus, Martinelli, Fabinho, Telles, Bremer, Dani Alves, and Ederson played.

Rodrygo was the one to watch and a stand out performer for Brazil despite the loss. The 21-year-old took up central pockets of space all across the pitch and the Cameroon defense struggled to track his movement. Rodrygo acted like a #8 in this match, more so than a #10 — in a bid to get more touches and help his team get out of their defensive third. Tite trusted the Real Madrid man with nearly all set-pieces and Rodrygo earned two dangerous free kicks just outside the box. Given his strong display, it was a surprise to see Rodrygo come off before the hour mark but Tite may be saving him for the round of 16.

Militao was never stretched defensively. Despite an attacking duo of Chuopo-Moting and Aboubakar from Cameroon. He played the full 90 minutes at center back. It’s not clear yet whether Danilo will be back for the round of 16, so the Real Madrid defender may end up playing another match at right back.

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