Preview - Brazil vs Croatia 03 June 18

Started by Harry85, Jun 02, 2018, 08:53 PM

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International Friendly
Brazil vs Croatia
Sunday, June 3rd, 2018
23:00pm (GMT +8 Timing)
Stadium: Anfield

Last five matches form: W W D W W
Average goals per match: 2.28
Average goals against per match: 0.61
Top Scorer: Neymar (53)

Last five matches form: W W D L W
Average goals per match: 1.58
Average goals against per match: 0.42
Top Scorer: Mario Mandžukić (30)

A real treat for fans in England in the latest round of International friendlies as Brazil and Croatia come to Liverpool and lock horns at Anfield.

With both sides headed to the finals this summer, this is one of the higher profile of the weekends games and has all the makings of a cracking contest.

A couple of the Brazil squad will be familiar with their surroundings here with Roberto Firmino currently at Liverpool and Philippe Coutinho having enjoyed a couple of seasons at the Reds in the recent past. Likewise Croatia's centre back Dejan Lovren who also currently plays for the Champions League runners up.

The past two occasions that these sides have met have come at the World Cup Finals themselves, with Brazil coming out on top on both occasions, winning 1-0 in 2006 and 3-1 in 2014.

Brazil head into this summer's tournament as the favourites to win it all and have been on a good run of late, losing just once in their last 19 fixtures. This Brazil side will always be a danger going forward, so it must therefore be particularly encouraging for coach Tite that they have conceded just once in their past six games.

Croatia's results in their warm up games have been mixed so far. A defeat to Peru was disappointing but a win over Mexico last time out was much more encouraging.

An interesting matchup this one, and certainly a good test for Brazil. Overall though we suspect they will have too much for Croatia in the final third.

Prediction: Brazil 2 - 1 Croatia


Half time: 0 - 0
Full time: 2 - 0
Shots: 9 - 3
Shots on target: 2 - 2
Corner Kicks: 1 - 2
Possession: 60% - 40%

Four booked by referee Michael Oliver here. Fernandinho had his name taken for Brazil, whilst Ivan Rakitić, Ivan Perišić and Andrej Kramarić all saw yellow for Croatia.

Brazil looked much the most dangerous of the two sides in the first half. Philippe Coutinho and Willian causing problems when cutting inside, without either really being able to find any accuracy with the final ball or shot. Croatia for their part did have a couple of chances from set pieces and another from a glaring Brazilian defensive error. 0-0 at the break though.

The start of the second half brought the sight all Brazilian fans have been waiting to see as Neymar came on for Fernandinho for his first appearance since breaking a bone in his foot.

And it didn't take him long to remind everyone just why Brazilian fans were so keen to see him back in the side. Receiving the ball on the left in the 69th minute, the World's most expensive danced into the area and cut back inside two defenders before rifling a blistering finish into the top left corner.

Brazil did get a second goal, but not until deep into stoppage time. Roberto Firmino beating the offside trap to chest down in the area, hold off a strong challenge from his marker and deftly lob the keeper. 2-0 final score.

Plenty of positives for Brazil here as they largely restricted a talented Croatia side. The biggest plus of all though was of course the second half performance of Neymar. Looking sharp throughout, his goal fell firmly into the World class category and he will be a pleasure to watch in Russia if continuing in this form.

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