Brazil finds form as Mexico, Argentina bow out

The tournament favourite had surprisingly drawn blanks in 0-0 draws against South Africa and Iraq, but had no such problems when beating Denmark 4-0 in Salvador.

Gabriel Jesus Neymar - cropped

Gabriel Jesus and Neymar celebrate Brazil's second goal against Denmark.

Brazil finally hit the goal trail in the men's football tournament at Rio 2016 to avoid an embarrassing group-stage exit on home soil.

The tournament favourite had surprisingly drawn blanks in 0-0 draws against South Africa and Iraq, but had no such problems when beating Denmark 4-0 in Salvador.

First-half strikes from Gabriel Barbosa and Gabriel Jesus eased the tension at the Fonte Nova Arena and Luan rounded off a fine move in the second half to put the result beyond doubt. There was a late scare for Brazil when Neymar went down in pain after appearing to twist an ankle, but the Barcelona forward was able to continue and saw Gabriel Barbosa score again late on.

Brazil will take on Colombia in the last eight, while Denmark is also through - after South Africa and Iraq drew 1-1 - and will play Nigeria. Colombia beat Nigeria 2-0 on Wednesday to join the African nation in progressing from Group B and deny Japan, 1-0 winner over Sweden.

Reigning champion Mexico and Argentina each bowed out of the competition on Wednesday, while Germany progressed courtesy of a 10-0 trouncing of Fiji.

Mexico finished third in Group C after suffering a 1-0 defeat in Brasilia to South Korea, which now faces Honduras. The latter qualified at Argentina's expense following a 1-1 draw between the two nations. Group D winner Portugal, Germany's last-eight opponent, rounded off its pool campaign by sharing the spoils with Algeria.

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