In a first-half played at a breathless pace, the tackles came thundering in and it was hardly surprising that Brazil’s two opening goals were the product of set pieces. Benfica skipper Luisao scored the first from an Elano free-kick in the 24th minute when the defender was allowed a free header, which he buried in the corner past Mariano Andujar in the Argentine goal.
It was 2-0 just six minutes later after Kaka was brought down on the edge of the box. This time Elano’s free-kick was blocked by a defender but Kaka managed to set-up Gilberto Silva whose fierce drive was only parried by Andujar. Sevilla striker Luis Fabiano pounced on the loose ball to score from six yards out.
Argentina had their moments with Lionel Messi and Carlos Tevez always looking dangerous. It was Tevez who cleverly set-up Maxi Rodriguez for the home side’s best chance in the first half but Julio Cesar saved with his legs from point-blank range.
Argentina pulled a goal back in the 65th minute thanks to a 30-yard left foot drive from Jesus Datolo which soared past Julio Cesar into the top corner. However, Brazil were 3-1 ahead within two minutes when Kaka played a wonderfully-weighted pass into the path of Fabiano who sprinted around Nicolas Otamendi before chipping the ball over Andujar for his second goal of the tie.