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FOXBORO, MA - JUNE 12: Raul Ruidiaz #11 of Peru scores despite the defense of Daniel Alves #2 of Brazil and Alisson Becker #1 in the second half during the 2016 Copa America Centenario Group B match against Brazil at Gillette Stadium on June 12, 2016 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Brazil Eliminated From Copa America After 1-0 Loss To Peru And Possible Illegal Goal

Brazil lost to Peru 1-0 in their third Copa America Centenario game on Sunday to be eliminated from the tournament in the group stage for the first time in nearly 30 years.

Brazil Eliminated From Copa America After 1-0 Loss To Peru And Possible Illegal Goal

Nevertheless, the five-time World Cup champions complained that Raul Ruidiaz’s 75th-minute goal at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts went in off his hand after being deflected from a cross.

“It was such a clear handball,” said Brazil coach Dunga, who led the team to a World Cup as captain. However, Dunga also added that he is not worried about his job following Brazil’s elimination, the country’s first from the group stage of Copa America since 1987.

“I am only afraid of death,” he said. Dunga, who took charge after the 2014 World Cup, is set to lead his country at the Olympics in Rio in August.

Brazil’s players angrily protested to Uruguayan referee Andres Cunha, but he remained firm in his decision after consulting with the fourth official. Some began calling the play” Hand of God II” — a nod to Diego Maradona, the legendary Argentine player who helped his team beat England with a controversial goal in the 1986 World Cup in Mexico that was dubbed “mano de Dios,” or hand of God. Brazil needed only a tie to advance. Instant replays from certain angles clearly showed Ruidiaz tapping the ball in with his hand before it hit his thigh and went in the goal.

“I’m happy with the step we’ve taken,” Ruidiaz said in an on-field interview afterwards. “The goal came from a very rapid play, then it hit my thigh and I don’t understand why there’s so much controversy. Thank God, the referee confirmed the goal.”

Peru, who had not defeated Brazil since 1985, will now advance to the quarter-finals along with fellow Group D member Ecuador, who knocked out Haiti with a 4-0 victory on Sunday.

Peru will next face Colombia on Friday at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, while Ecuador will play the United States at CenturyLink Field in Seattle, Washington on Thursday.

The US defeated Paraguay 1-0 on Saturday at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia thanks to a goal from forward Clint Dempsey in the 27th minute. Gyasi Zardes took on two Paraguay defenders and worked his way to the end line inside the Paraguay box before centering the ball on the ground. Dempsey ran to the penalty spot and met Zardes’ cross to fire a one-time left footer beneath a defender and diving Paraguay goalkeeper Justo Villar to score the lone goal.

FOXBORO, MA – JUNE 12: Raul Ruidiaz #11 of Peru scores despite the defense of Daniel Alves #2 of Brazil and Alisson Becker #1 in the second half during the 2016 Copa America Centenario Group B match against Brazil at Gillette Stadium on June 12, 2016 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

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Written by Pablo Mena

Writer and assistant editor for usports.org. NY Giants and Rangers fan. Film and TV enthusiast (especially Harry Potter and The Office) and lover of foreign languages and cultures.

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