He doesn't just do the dirty work, hey? There have been few better midfielders so far at this tournament than Casemiro, and here the Manchester United man delivered a match-winning moment to go with his pair of standout performances. Sure, he needed the aid of a deflection, his superbly-struck half-volley taking a nick off Manchester City's Manuel Akanji en route to the far corner, but the 30-year-old was a fitting hero for Tite's side, having turned in another flawless display in the centre of the park. Casemiro's ability to mop up, read the game and cover space defensively is absolutely key to the way Brazil want to play, and if he's chipping in goals as well then what a bonus that is for the five-time champions.
It may have taken a while to come, but there was, just as there was against Serbia, a sense of inevitability about Brazil's victory. Quite simply, they have too much attacking quality to fail for 90 minutes. Even without their talisman, the injured Neymar, the array of talent on display was frightening. Richarlison struggling? Bring on Gabriel Jesus. Raphinha fading? OK, let's have a look at Antony then. When things got tense, Tite was able to bring on one of the most in-form midfielders in the Premier League in Bruno Guimaraes, and one of the best young players in world football in Rodrygo. All of the changes had a positive impact. One of the subs, Rodrygo, set up the winner, his neat flick finding Casemiro on the edge of the box, and had it not been for a superb late block, the Real Madrid star would have added a second. Some may argue the manager should be getting more out of such a stacked squad, but for now Brazil are exactly where they want to be; in the last 16, keeping clean sheets and knowing they have the ability to beat any team that stands in front of them.
Two games, two clean sheets, zero shots on target faced. Qatar has been a bit of a holiday so far for Brazil's goalkeeper, hasn't it? The Liverpool man was a virtual spectator against Serbia, and he was hardly required here as his side produced another accomplished defensive display. With Marquinhos and Thiago Silva rekindling their brilliant central defensive partnership in the middle, with Casemiro patrolling in front and with Alex Sandro and the impressive Eder Militao solid and reliable at full-back, Brazil look like the most robust team in the tournament. And even if that fails, they have the best goalkeeper in the world too. We just haven't seen him yet...