Brazil coasts by Serbia 2-0, advances to knockout round

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Brazil secured their passage into the knockout phase at the 2018 World Cup after defeating Serbia 2-0 in their final Group E clash.

The Barcelona midfielder was replaced by the more defensive Fernandinho in the 66th minute as Serbia went on the attack in a bid to save their World Cup campaign.

Tite's side probed away at the White Eagles in the first half before Paulinho made the breakthrough in the 36th minute to give them a 1-0 lead at the break.

Even if Brazil beat Serbia, they could still finish second in the group if Switzerland manage to outdo them on goal difference in their game against Costa Rica.

It was Paulinho's eighth goal since Tite took the helm in 2016 and brought his former Corinthians star back into the set-up, with only Neymar and Gabriel Jesus (10) scoring more for Brazil in the same timeframe.

Serbia's resistance eventually broke on 35 minutes as Philippe Coutinho's well-weighted pass found Paulinho, who lifted the ball over Stojkovic to put Selecao ahead. I am here because I worked and I deserve it.

Brazil fans enjoy themselves outside the stadium before the match.

Reed in contention after 31 on front Sunday at U.S. Open
Open victor , making par on six of the last seven holes and birdieing the par-5 15th to give himself some breathing room. Johnson's Saturday brought him back to the field and during the final round it turned into anyone's game.

Brazil did what it had to do to win, making sure it wasn't the second big team to exit the tournament after 2014 champion Germany was knocked out by South Korea.

Tite's team went into the game knowing a draw would be enough to see them through, while the Serbs needed a win to guarantee progression for them to the last 16 in Russian Federation.

Switzerland also advanced after a 2-2 draw with Costa Rica and will next face Sweden on Tuesday in St. Petersburg.

Mitrovic was presented with a golden opportunity to equalise four minutes later after Alisson punched a cross from the right straight at the striker, whose header came back off Silva and rebounded into the keeper's arms.

Antonio Rukavina, who started in place of the experienced Branislav Ivanovic, saw his shot pushed into the danger area by Alisson and the goalkeeper was relieved to see Silva stop Mitrovic nodding the loose ball home.

Brazil extend their FIFA World Cup group stage unbeaten streak to 15 games on their way to topping Group E. He then jumped above Serbia's defense from a corner for Brazil's second goal.