The second World Cup quarter final looks like the pick of the four matches in the round when Brazil take on Belgium for a place in the semi-final of the tournament. With the big names beginning to depart there is a real opportunity for both these sides.
Brazil cruised into this quarter final when they took care of a disappointing Mexico side while Belgium had to come from two behind to Japan to knock them out with the last kick of the match in their last 16 encounter.
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Slowly but surely more and more people are beginning to appreciate Brazil as the dangers they are for this tournament. Personally I think they’ve been the best team in the tournament since it began and just because they’ve not been thrashing sides four and five should not detract from that. The days of brutal beatings in World Cup football are long gone barring the odd exception.
The only goal Brazil have conceded in the tournament remains that dodgy goal for Switzerland and since that game they have scored twice in every match which is no mean effort given that they have faced defensive sides throughout. The one concern would be that their attacking players haven’t clicked but on the flip side of that they are due and when they do click they could be devastating.
I have been really disappointed with Belgium in this tournament. In the 15-20 minutes of each match they have played they have been devastating but it is so frustrating watching them when the handbrake is firmly on as it has been for the rest of their games. It took Japan scoring twice to wake them up in the second round and they can’t afford a slow start here.
I would love to see Belgium press high and go at sides with the talent they have in their squad but there seems to be a reluctance to do that. It certainly isn’t down to a lack of quality because then they get going they look formidable. It can only be a tactical thing which is a shame. Hopefully Brazil bring the best out of them.
Marcelo has recovered from the injury he picked up in the Serbia contest and is expected to replace Felipe Luis at left-back. Fernandinho will come in for the suspended Casemiro in the centre of the park.
Belgium are mulling over the idea of starting with Marouane Fellaini and Nacer Chadli after they made huge impacts off the bench in the previous match. Dries Mertens and Yannick Carrasco could be dropped.
We know Brazil will play well in this match. We hope Belgium will but nobody truly knows for sure that they will which makes betting on the game a little difficult. I hope Belgium come out and have a good go here and make it an open match for all the various Belgium goal bets I have on the tournament but it will be just one bet for me here.
I think it is safe to expect Brazil to take the game to Belgium in this match and I expect them to find the back of the net in the game too. Japan scored twice against Belgium in the previous round and with the attacking talent that Brazil have I don’t think it is asking too much for Brazil to do the same. Odds against on the Samba Boys scoring more than 1.5 goals looks good to me.
Back Brazil – Over 1.5 goals for a 4/10 stake at 2.10 with Coral