Neymar had a low drive kept out by Stojkovic at the near post after a swift break five minutes into the second period, and Serbia responded by turning up the pressure.

Antonio Rukavina, who started in place of the experienced Branislav Ivanovic, saw his shot pushed into the danger area by Alisson and the goalkeeper was relieved to see Silva stop Mitrovic nodding the loose ball home.

A speculative cross from Milinkovic-Savic had Alisson scrambling, while Mitrovic headed a cross from Rukavina straight at the feet of the keeper in the 65th minute.

Tite replaced Paulinho with Fernandinho as he sought greater stability, but it was Silva, capitalising on shoddy marking from Nemanja Matic, heading home at the near post from Neymar's left-wing corner two minutes later that truly gave him that.

The wind was taken out of Serbia's sails and Brazil confidently saw out the final stages, Stojkovic doing well to thwart Neymar in stoppage time as the Selecao avoided the humiliating group-stage exit that befell fellow heavyweights and defending champions Germany earlier in the day.