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Dani Alves knew Julio Cesar would keep the Brazilian dream alive

Dani Alves had no doubt Julio Cesar would redeem himself in Saturday's dramatic penalty shoot-out against Chile.

Julio Cesar saves Chile's second penalty, taken by Alexis Sanchez, in the dramatic shoot-out in Belo Horizonte on Saturday. Picture: EPA
Julio Cesar saves Chile's second penalty, taken by Alexis Sanchez, in the dramatic shoot-out in Belo Horizonte on Saturday. Picture: EPA

Four years ago Cesar broke down in tears after his mistake against the Netherlands sent Brazil out of the World Cup. But the 34-year-old won back a place in the heart of the host nation when he saved two of Chile's kicks in the 3-2 shoot-out victory in Belo Horizonte.

"He knows we've got total faith in him," Alves said. "We all knew that it would soon be Julio's moment to shine. So, it didn't matter what each of us actually said to him before [the shoot-out].

"To be honest I can't remember what I did say, and I bet most of the lads are the same. It wasn't about the words, it was about making it clear he knew we believed in him."

Brazil may be without their star player, Neymar, for their last-eight tie against Colombia as he is struggling with a thigh injury sustained in a bruising challenge with Charles Aranguiz. "We need to evaluate it but we should have three, four or five days to try and make sure he can play," said coach Luiz Felipe Scolari.

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