The Barcelona star struck twice and Oscar scored the third goal in injury time to give Brazil a winning star against the resilient Croatians. (Agencies)
"I'm very, very happy to score two goals to help the team win the match. I'm happy that we react strongly to turn the match around. We have a strong squad. If we don't play connected we wouldn't win the match," said Neymar.
Brazil coach Luiz Scolari hailed Neymar, considered one of the best in the world, saying the youngster was under lot of pressure to score.
"Neymar has great quality, and he has a lot of pressure. Today he scored two goals. All we want is Neymar to be happy playing," said Scolari.
Scolari said Neymar doesn't need to be reminded that he is the best in the world.
"He plays for the team and we also play for him. He doesn't need anyone to tell him he is the best in the world. He just need to continue playing for the team, for Brazil," he said.
Reacting to Croatian coach Niko Kovac's claims that referee Yuichi Nishimura of being partial to his side, Scolari said the Japanese was spot in awarding the penalty in the 70th minute after Dejan Lovren challenged Fred in the penalty box.
Neymar concerted from the spot giving Brazil a 2-1 lead. "It's up to the referee to decide if it's a penalty, for me it's also a penalty. I watched maybe 10 times of the play and I think it's a penalty," said Scolari.
This was the third encounter between the two teams. The first was a friendly held in 2005 in Split that finished 1-1. The second took place in the opening round of the 2006 World Cup in Berlin, when Brazil secured a 1-0 victory.
This was also the fourth time that Brazil played a World Cup opener. In the previous curtain-raisers, Brazil notched two wins (4-0 over Mexico in 1950 and 2-1 against Scotland in 1998) and one draw (0-0 against former Yugoslavia in 1974).
The Barcelona star struck twice and Oscar scored the third goal in injury time to give Brazil a winning star against the resilient Croatians.