Saturday, May 8, 2021

Russia 2018: Match of the day – Brazil vs Serbia preview


tiamin rice

Brazilian players, Neymar and Coutinho
Photo: @Getty Images

Group: E
Teams: Brazil vs Serbia
Time: 7:00pm
Venue: Spartak Stadium Moscow

The showdown in Moscow’s Spartak Stadium will have Brazil and Serbia fight out to secure a place in the next round of the tournament.

Brazil needs at least a point to see them through while Serbia needs three points from the game or will depend on Costa Rica to beat Switzerland by more than a goal if they settle for a draw with Brazil.

Brazil have not being in their best form in this competition and were held to a 1-1 draw by Switzerland, and struggled to beat Costa Rica 2-0 in their second game.

The win, might although boost their morale, to give the excellent display expected from them with their high profile talents.

Brazil’s Neymar, the most expensive player in the world, has not lived up to the expectations and broke down in tears after the last minute goal against Costa Rica.

Serbia, meanwhile, is coming into the game on the back of a disappointing 1-2 loss to Switzerland.

Serbia was leading for much of the first half, thanks to Mitrovic’s fifth-minute goal. Two goals from Granit Xhaka and Xherdan Shaqiri stuck them to get the three points away from them.

They will have to up their game against Brazil who have the likes of Neymar da Silva, Phillipe Coutinho and Gabriel Jesus to cause more than worry.

Mladen Krstajic’s side has strength but are not one of the quicker sides in the competition, a weakness that ultimately cost them the match against the Swiss.

Serbia hope to put the last-gasp loss to Switzerland behind them when they face five-time champions Brazil. The feeling in the Serbian camp is that all the pressure is on Brazil, and therefore the dream is still very much alive.

Possible line-ups
Serbia: Vladimir Stojkovic; Antonio Rukavina, Branislav Ivanovic, Dusko Tosic, Aleksandar Kolarov; Nemanja Matic, Luka Milivojevic, Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, Dusan Tadic, Filip Kostic; Aleksandar Mitrovic

Brazil: Alisson; Fagner, Miranda, Thiago Silva, Marcelo; Casemiro, Paulinho; Willian, Philippe Coutinho, Neymar; Gabriel Jesus

Did you know?
Philippe Coutinho has been Brazil’s most decisive player in Russia thus far having scored two of their three goals so far. But his relevance goes beyond that as he is also A Selecao’s player who has covered the most ground in the two previous matches – 22.1 kilometres.

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