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Vinicius Jr scored twice as Brazil kick-started their Copa America campaign with a 4-1 win against Paraguay.

After a disappointing draw against Costa Rica in their first match, Brazil needed to beat Paraguay before their final group fixture against Colombia.

The nine-time winners were gifted a chance to open the lead in the 30th minute when they were awarded a penalty for handball following Lucas Paqueta’s shot from outside the box, but the West Ham midfielder blazed his spot-kick wide.

Paqueta made amends four minutes later when he played in Vinicius Jr to open the scoring following a brilliant team move.

Savinho doubled Brazil’s lead just before the break with his first goal for Brazil when he scored from close range following a mix-up in the Paraguay defence.

Vinicius Jr, who has largely struggled to replicate his Real Madrid form with his country, grabbed his second four minutes into first-half stoppage time when he closed down a clearance to make it 3-0.

Paraguay, bottom of the group on zero points, reduced the deficit shortly after the break thanks to a fantastic long-range strike from Getafe’s Omar Alderete.

But Brazil were handed another controversial penalty for handball in the 65th minute, with Paqueta making up for his earlier miss by netting Brazil’s fourth.

Tempers flared in the latter stages as defender Andres Cubas was sent off for kicking out at Aston Villa’s Douglas Luiz.

Elsewhere, Group D leaders Colombia continued their impressive start to the competition with a 3-0 win against Costa Rica.

Liverpool winger Luis Diaz opened the scoring on the half-hour when he converted from the penalty spot.

Colombia doubled their lead just before the hour when former Tottenham defender Davinson Sanchez headed home from a corner.

Jhon Cordoba smashed in a third from close range.

Colombia can ensure they finish top of Group D by avoiding defeat against Brazil in their final group stage fixture on Tuesday evening (02:00 BST on Wednesday).