WORLD CUP: Brazil into semifinals after tense Colombia victory

(CNN) -- There were goals, there was choreographed dancing, there were moments of great footballing beauty, but Colombia -- one of the teams to excite most at this most thrilling of World Cups -- is going home after a quarterfinal defeat at the hands of Brazil in Fortaleza.

Strikes from the center-back pairing of captain Thiago Silva and David Luiz put Brazil into an unassailable lead in Friday's all-South American clash clash and, despite a late penalty by James Rodriguez, the tournament host held on to win 2-1.

There was concern, however, for Brazil's star striker Neymar -- who was stretchered off in what seemed like considerable pain in the game's closing moments.

The result marks the first time Brazil has reached the semifinal stage since winning the title in Japan and South Korea in 2002, and sets up an intriguing clash against Germany on Tuesday -- a repeat of that year's final.

The Germans overcame France in the day's earlier quarterfinal in Rio de Janeiro thanks to a single goal from defender Mats Hummels.

In the sweaty evening heat of the Estadio Castelao, however, it was another pair of defenders who were the unlikely heroes for Brazil.

More to follow ...

 

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