Qatar 2022: Richarlison stunner shuts up doubters as Brazil kick off campaign in style
FIFA World Cup Brazil Serbia

Tottenham Hotspur man Richarlison came up big for the Selecao of Brazil against a very tough to break down Serbia side on Thursday evening.

Brazil, the number one ranked team in the world and the main favourites for the 2022 World Cup trophy, looked to be heading for a goalless draw thanks to a resolute Serbia defence. However, two goals from Richarlison saw them open their tournament in style.

Having been selected ahead of Arsenal man Gabriel Jesus, Richarlison would have felt the massive displeasure of millions of fans who protested the decision in their homes and on social media. But after his impressive performance as the makeshift centre forward for Tite's men, they will be calling for more as the tournament progresses.

Serbia, meanwhile, fought valiantly but the outcome was a mirror of the 2018 World Cup result when both sides faced off in the group stages.

A quiet game for Neymar

Brazil's attack brought the heat to the Serbians right from the start. Every foray into the European's half always looked like it would end in a goal but the first half managed to pass without event, giving the Serbians hope of staging a fight in the second half.

The Serbians were saved by poor finishing from Barcelona man Raphinha and Vanja Milinkovic-Savic, whose form in goal on the evening was simply inspired and inspirational.

The second half started as the first did, with Brazil putting the pedal to the metal. Their tempo increased and Serbia were left with no option than to defend with their lives. They would have been happy with a draw but the football gods had something else in mind.

In the opening seconds of the second half, Vanja Milinkovic-Savic had to deny Raphinha again just as he did in the first half. Alex Sandro hit the post with a long range effort and that was the sign that the Torino goalkeeper could be beaten.

Two minutes after Alex Sandro's shot snuck past Milinkovic-Savic and hit the post, Vinicius struck a shot which he parried into the path of Richarlison, who made no mistake. Brazil did not let up and soon after, Richarlison scored the goal of the tournament so far.

Vinicius, who had been Brazil's main man in the match, side-footed a ball into the path of the Spurs man, who flicked the ball and fired a beautiful acrobatic volley into the back of the net.

He was replaced soon after by Gabriel Jesus as Title gave the fans what they initially wanted, but things did not slow down. Casemiro hit the post with a well placed shot that was headed for the top corner and Milinkovic-Savic continued to pull out the stops to keep Serbia in the game, and possibly, in the tournament.

In the end, Brazil fans smiled while Serbia fans were downcast. And Richarlison will be stealing all the headlines after scoring his 18th and 19th goals in his first World Cup to become Brazil's highest goal scorer since his debut in 2018.