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Brazil wins behind Ronaldo's record goal

Brazil's Ronaldo, right, scores past Ghana's John Pantsil during the Brazil vs Ghana Round of 16 World Cup soccer match at Dortmund's Stadium, Germany, Tuesday, June 27, 2006.
With one swift move in the fifth minute Tuesday, the superstar striker overtook German Gerd Mueller as the greatest scorer in World Cup history, spoiled Ghana's scrappy debut and put defending champion Brazil into its fourth straight quarterfinals.
"I want to continue to increase the record," Ronaldo said, "but without forgetting that the main goal in the World Cup is winning the title."
Brazil had to work for its 3-0 win over the Black Stars, who pressured enough to create chances but kept shooting either just off the mark or well within reach of goalkeeper Dida.
"Today's game was as we expected," Brazil coach Carlos Alberto Parreira said. "It wasn't easy and we knew it wasn't going to be easy, 3-0 seems easy, but it wasn't."
The Brazilians used long, penetrating passes to build each of its goals, but Ronaldo's tournament-record 15th was the only one it would need. With its 11th straight tournament win, Brazil took another step toward a fourth straight World Cup finals, and next faces France in a rematch of the 1998 final.
"The big guys are coming to the quarterfinals," Parreira said. "It is getting closer and closer. It's getting tougher and tougher."
On the counterattack, Kaka sent a second long pass up the heart of the field to an unmarked Ronaldo, who touched the ball once toward Richard Kingson, then sent the goalkeeper flailing with a brilliant stepover move. Ronaldo cut left, and with a defender closing, popped the ball into the net.
Ronaldo said he never intended to break the World Cup scoring record -- it came to him.
"It was never my goal, it just happened match after match," he said. "This is the result of lots of work, lots of sacrifice."
Mueller scored his 14 goals over 13 games in the 1970 and 1974 World Cups; Ronaldo has played 18 games in the past three tournaments.
Ronaldo performed poorly in Brazil's first two matches against Croatia and Australia, when the Real Madrid striker was held scoreless and substituted for twice. He was also bothered by a weight controversy and a string of minor health problems.
One minute into first-half injury time, Adriano added to Brazil's lead in a breakaway set up by a through ball, using his left thigh to nudge a waist-high cross from Cafu into the net. Replays showed Adriano appeared to be offside when he touched the ball in, and fans booed the replay.
The third goal also came when a long pass sprang a Brazilian one-on-one against Kingson. Midfielder Ze Roberto received the ball and flicked it over the keeper, who left his box and tried to make a save with his head. Safely past, Ze Roberto jogged the ball in alone.

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