"He played the full match". Even before his latest setback, there were doubts over Neymar's fitness heading into the World Cup after a three-month layoff. He took the field for the match between Belgium and Panama in Sochi last Monday.
Maybe it was the royal blue uniforms they lined up in Friday, rather than their famous canary yellow shirts, that made Brazil look so unfamiliar, so off, but then they wore those in the first match and managed only a goal and a draw against Switzerland.
Neymar's emotions at the end - breaking down in tears - highlighted Brazil's relief at getting its first win of the tournament after being held 1-1 by Switzerland in their opening match.
Neymar had been denied a penalty after referee Bjorn Kuipers chose to reverse his initial decision following a consultation with the video assistant.
However, VAR intervention led to a reversal of the decision, as replays showed minimal contact between Gonzalez and Neymar, who had fallen backwards as if pulled down.
- Neymar has been fouled 14 times so far in the 2018 World Cup, more than any other player. "We don't need referees to win the game, we just want it to be fair".
Brazil outshot Costa Rica 23 to 4 over the course of the match with nine on target to zero for the CONCACAF squad. They also lost heavily to Belgium and England in warm-up friendlies, but captain Bryan Ruiz believes they can follow Switzerland's example to cause another massive upset.
With Brazil increasingly trying their luck from outside the box as Costa Rica defended with discipline, Willian shot over and Navas saved Marcelo's low strike.
It almost worked. Kuipers scolded Neymar to stop yapping at him about uncalled fouls, then delivered a yellow card when Neymar slammed the ball with his hand after yet another didn't go his way. Coach Ramirez Oscar will have the responsibility to come out with his best choice of players, so as to defeat a powerful team like Brazil. He often wastes good attacking chances by choosing to take a tumble instead and, at a crucial stage during the second half, his behaviour had a contagious effect and his team mates became distracted by all the fuss he created.