NO CONTEST Brazil coasts to Copa victory over Haiti
By Ian Quillen Soccer News Net Contributing Editor
ORLANDO, Fla. -- Philippe Coutinho scored a hat trick, Renato Augusto had a brace, and Brazil rebounded from an uninspired opener with a 7-1 victory over Haiti in a Copa America Centenario Group B match Wednesday night.
Gabriel and Lucas Lima also scored for Brazil, which leads the tournament in scoring after settling for a 0-0 draw against Ecuador in its opener Saturday.
Carolina Railhawks midfielder James Marcelin scored late for Haiti, which enjoyed support from a surprising portion of the crowd of the 28,241 at Camping World Stadium.
The goal was Haiti’s first in Copa America in its second match in the tournament, and first in three meetings with Brazil.
Coutinho opened the scoring in the 14th minute when he took a pass and, given space by Haiti’s back four, surged forward. From about 22 yards out, he unleashed a dipping strike that snuck between goalkeeper Johny Placide and the left post.
Coutinho’s second goal 15 minutes later was more straightforward, after Jonas reached Dani Alves’ cross as two Hatian defenders collided. Jonas then sent a cross past Placide to Coutinho, who finished into an open net.
Marcelin scored on a rebound after Max Hilaire’s shot was saved, making it 5-1 in the 70th minute.
Brazil would score twice more, with Coutinho adding the last on a 25-yarder that curled around Placide and inside the right post.