Brazil only managed to get the better of Chile in a penalty shoot-out after a dramatic 1-1 draw in Belo Horizonte.
The Round of 16 kicked off in Belo Horizonte with the hosts facing a side that knocked out reigning World and European champions Spain. David Luiz shook off a back problem and Fernandinho replaced Paulinho, while Arturo Vidal returned after he was rested in the 2-0 defeat to Holland.
Chile had only reached the World Cup knockouts three times before – in 1962, 1998 and 2010 – on each occasion eliminated by Brazil. The atmosphere was extraordinary, both sets of fans shouting their anthems as the other tried to drown it out with jeers.
Both sides had early timid penalty appeals from Edu Vargas and Fred waved away, but Brazil broke through with an own goal. David Luiz was at the back post to redirect a corner after Thiago Silva’s headed flick-on, but Gonzalo Jara appeared to get a decisive deflection.
The Selecao shot themselves in the foot with some dreadful defending, as Hulk gave away possession from a throw-in and allowed Alexis Sanchez time and space for an angled drive into the far bottom corner.
Neymar’s header was deflected inches wide off Francisco Silva and from that corner Claudio Bravo was all at sea, but Brazil failed to make the most of it. Neymar chested down a long ball before being crowded out in the box, only for Fred to balloon the follow-up over from six yards.
A long-range Dani Alves strike was palmed out from under the bar, while Fred failed to finish off a strong Neymar run. Brazil gave possession away again in the final third and only desperate defending blocked off Charles Aranguiz as he was pulling the trigger from point-blank range.
Hulk thought he had restored Brazil’s lead when chesting down a cross with a scuffed shot into the bottom corner, but referee Howard Webb only booked him for handball. Luiz Gustavo also went into the book and would be suspended for the next round.
The tension grew in the Selecao ranks and Chile almost took advantage, but Julio Cesar brilliantly changed direction mid-air to parry an Aranguiz strike from 10 yards after Vidal and Isla combined.
Eugenio Mena’s last-ditch challenge did enough to put off Jo as he went sliding on to a Hulk cross from six yards and Neymar’s header was straight at the goalkeeper.
Claudio Bravo had to work a lot harder to parry a powerful Hulk effort and in stoppages Alexis Sanchez was crowded out from getting his finish away.
It went to extra time at the Mineirao, the first time Brazil have been pushed beyond 90 minutes in a World Cup since 1998 against Holland.
Oscar’s header was too weak to trouble Bravo and the goalkeeper got down to beat away a Hulk snapshot. Medel was stretchered off for Chile after struggling through a muscular injury, but after 129 minutes of football Cagliari striker Mauricio Pinilla almost gave his side the winner with a rocket that smacked against the crossbar.
Ramires drilled just wide at the other end and two exhausted teams were pushed to penalties.
David Luiz converted, but Pinilla went from potential hero to villain with a central effort straight at Julio Cesar.
Willian saved his blushes by turning wide of the target, but Julio Cesar parried from Alexis Sanchez too. Bravo got a hand to Marcelo’s penalty, but not enough to keep it out.
Aranguiz hit a missile under the bar and Bravo got his leg to Hulk’s central effort, so Diaz converted for 2-2 after four kicks.
Neymar was up last for Brazil and scored after a stuttering run-up. Gonzalo Jara had to score, but he hit the upright to send Chile out on penalties.
Brazil 1-1 Chile (aet, 3-2)
Scorers: David Luiz 18 (B), Alexis Sanchez 32 (C)
Penalties: David Luiz (goal, B), Pinilla (saved, C), Willian (wide, B), Alexis Sanchez (saved, C), Marcelo (goal, B), Aranguiz (goal, C), Hulk (saved, B), Diaz (goal, C), Neymar (goal, B)
Brazil: Julio Cesar; Dani Alves, Thiago Silva, David Luiz, Marcelo; Fernandinho (Ramires 73), Luiz Gustavo; Hulk, Oscar (Willian 106), Neymar; Fred (Jo 64)
Chile: Bravo; Jara, Medel (Rojas 108), Silva; Isla, Aranguiz, Diaz, Mena; Vidal (Pinilla 87); Vargas (Gutierrez 57), Alexis Sanchez
Ref: Webb (ENG)