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Robinho rues substitution, wanted to take penalty

Brazil forward Robinho rued not being able to participate in the penalty shoot-out that saw Paraguay oust them from the Copa America yet again.

Robinho’s goal in the opening quarter-hour had Brazil on track to progress past the quarter-finals in Concepcion.

However, Derlis Gonzalez equalised from the spot and then, with nothing to separate the sides at the end of 90 minutes, scored the winning penalty for a 4-3 shoot-out win.

Douglas Costa and Everton Ribeiro were the shoot-out culprits for Brazil.

Robinho was unable to take a spot-kick after being replaced by Ribeiro in the 87th minute, and admitted he had hoped Dunga would allow him to remain on the field.

It was the second consecutive time Paraguay ousted Brazil from a Copa, after also sending them packing from Argentina in 2011 after a shoot-out.

“I wanted to stay to take a penalty, but I have to respect the coach’s decision,” Robinho told SporTV after the game.

“Usually I’m there to take a penalty. Now we must face it – our team has a lot to improve on. If one loses, everyone loses.”

The Santos man felt that a poor second-half display and the sloppy concession of a spot-kick that led to the equaliser was to blame for their elimination.

“Sadly, our performance dropped in the second half. We had the chance to finish the game. All due respect, but Paraguay aren’t among the best national teams,” he added.

“We could have won it, but we didn’t and conceded in a silly fashion.”

Stand-in captain Miranda defended the preparation taken by his side’s penalty-takers, and said the team were already looking ahead to the 2018 World Cup qualifiers.

“The ones who were prepared were chosen to take the kicks. That’s the thing with penalties, sometimes you can be ready and fail,” he said to SporTV.

“Only those who are there can fail or succeed. They were prepared but two failed – it happens.

“It’s a sad moment. We had a solid performance but then we conceded – on an aerial play – a penalty, and we were unfortunate in the shoot-out.

“We have to raise our heads and now think about the World Cup qualifiers – that’s the most important thing for us now.”

Sun 28 Jun, 2015
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