Brazil will take on Belgium in a highly anticipated World Cup quarterfinal, set to be played on Friday evening in Kazan.
Brazil has been rated as the favorite to win the World Cup, but quite honestly their level of play did not raise to the expectations. Brazil (on the back of a 2-0 win over Mexico) reached the quarters and did it relatively comfortably, so that is obviously a positive for them. Their highly rated defense also did the job, allowing only one goal in 4 games, so that is another good thing. But The Selecao need to raise their game if they are to win this tournament, because they were not impressive overall despite meeting only average opposition.
Belgium cruised through the group stage and was looking good value to destroy Japan in the Round 16, but The Red Devils found themselves 0-2 down in the second half and on the brink of a shocking exit. Somehow they pulled a miraculous comeback to win 3-2 in regular time and they deserve a lot of credit for that, but Japan also had something to do with letting that happen. Nevertheless, at the very least it was a huge morale boost for Belgium to come back like that.Bet on Brazil vs. Belgium and claim your 100% (100 Euro) freebet at Ohmbet now!
Team news & lineups:
Belgium is expected to be at full strength for this clash. Brazil, on the other hand, has some problems. Casemiro is suspended, while Marcelo, Paulinho, Costa and Danilo all have various fitness problems. However, all 4 are expected to be ready for the game.
Brazil: Becker – Danilo, Silva, Miranda, Marcelo – Paulinho, Fernandinho, Coutinho – Willian, Jesus, Neymar
Belgium: Courtois – Alderweireld, Kompany, Vertonghen – Meunier, Witsel, De Bruyne, Chadli – Mertens, Lukaku, Hazard
Casemiro`s absence will be a big problem for Brazil, especially as the midfield was already arguably the weakest area in the team, and the fact that Paulinho will likely not be at 100% (he trained alone) will complicate things even more.
Belgium could surely lose this if they play like they did against Japan, but they shown enough in the group stages and in the entire reign of Roberto Martinez (24 match undefeated streak) to make us believe that game was just an accident. Their comeback was also a good sign and the morale boost they will get from that could have a big impact on this game.
Brazil will be under much more pressure defensively in this match compared to their other outings, especially with Casemiro out, and their back line might not be able to save their rather impotent offense (despite the big names up front) this time around. Belgium has shown more in this tournament as far as I`m concerned and they definitely match Brazil in terms of talent, so considering the odds I will back the Red Devils to go through.
My tip is Belgium to qualify. Prediction: Brazil – Belgium 0-1.