Brazil vs Switzerland
FIFA World Cup 2018 Group E
Date: Sunday, 17 June 2018
Kick-Off at 19:00 UK / 20:00 CET
Venue: Rostov Arena, Rostov-na-Donu.
Brazil will feature the World Cup affair for the first time since the humiliating 7-1 loss to Germany four years ago on their soil. They are to open the 2018 campaign on Sunday evening against Switzerland at Rostov Arena.
- Brazil head into the tournament in high spirits after cruising their way to top the South American World Cup Qualifiers.
- They are favourites to win each of three group stage matches, but the first one against the stern defensive line of Switzerland could be their biggest test on the way.
- Both sides have been rock solid at the back recently and we don’t expect a goal fest on Sunday at Rostov Arena.
Brazil vs Switzerland Match Preview
Being one of the main contenders to go all the way this summer, Selecao are heavy favourites to top their respective group. The other three sides, including Switzerland, will likely be battling it out for the second place finish and the advancement to the knockout stage.
La Nati could be considered Brazil’s main challengers here mainly because of their fine set of results at recent majors. Switzerland were a tough nut to crack to all sides at both World Cup 2014 in Brazil as well as EURO 2016 in France. They were unlucky to concede a late extra-time goal from Angel Di Maria in the last 16 round of the tournament in Brazil four years ago.
Head coach Vladimir Petkovic brought the same (mainly) group of players to Russia meaning we can’t expect anyone trash this tight defensive-minded Swiss outfit. The opening game against Brazil will be a massive test for such statement. As many as nine wins in ten qualifying games were not enough to send La Nati automatically at the World Cup as they were forced to play Northern Ireland in the play-offs for the place in Russia. A single goal made the difference for the Swiss outfit back then, though it did come through a controversial penalty after a doubtful handball in the first leg at Windsor Park.
Brazil arrive to Russia as a heavily upgraded version to the team which reached the semi-final four years ago in their backyard. The new head coach Tite, who arrived midway through the qualifying campaign, has brought the much-needed solidness at the back as he took the most out of powerful defensive weapons in his ranks.
David Luiz was substituted by Inter’s reliable center-back Miranda, while Real Madrid’s Casemiro was just the missing piece of the puzzle four years ago. Team’s attacking potential never came in doubt and the sovereign top-spot finish in complicated South American World Cup Qualifications came as a result.
The Group E opens with Costa Rica taking on Serbia earlier the same day.
Brazil Team News
- The first-choice right-back Dani Alves was ruled out with an injury leaving Manchester City’s Danilo with a tough task to compensate.
- Other than this, Tite has the full squad on disposal.
- Brazil will come out in a 4-3-3 formation as we expect to see the identical starting XI from the final warm-up against Austria.
- Willian and Neymar played on the flanks behind Gabriel Jesus, while Coutinho, Casemiro and Paulinho made the midfield triangle.
Brazil Predicted Starting Eleven (4-3-3)
Alisson – Marquinhos, Miranda, Danilo, Marcelo – Casemiro, Paulinho, Coutinho – Willian, Neymar, Gabriel Jesus.
Switzerland Team News
- Vladimir Petkovic has an experiences squad which played together at last two major tournaments.
- The biggest issue for the Bosnian-born manager was Admir Mehmedi’s injury.
- The attacking midfielder will be replaced by Steven Zuber, while the rest of the team will look more or less identical to the one which featured EURO 2016 in France.
- The main question is whether Breel Embolo or Haris Seferovic will start up front.
- We expect to see the same side that fought it out to a 1-1 draw to Spain on June 3rd.
Switzerland Predicted Starting Eleven (4-2-3-1)
Sommer – Schar, Akanji, Lichtsteiner, Rodriguez – Behrami, Xhaka – Shaqiri, Dzemaili, Zuber – Seferovic.
Brazil vs Switzerland Head-to-head
Interestingly, teams have a win, a draw, and a defeat each coming into their fourth head to head encounter.
The first one took place at the Wold Cup 1950 when the sides shared spoils in a 2-2 draw in the group stage.
The other two clashes had a friendly character, Brazil winning the one in November 2006 1-2 and Switzerland clinching the 1-0 victory in August 2013.
Brazil vs Switzerland Prediction
Brazil improved their defensive displays heavily under Tite and they will be super tough to break down in Russia. Selecao shipped no more than two goals in last 11 outings across competitions. They kept their net untouched in five straight games coming into this one even though the opposition included the likes of England, Russia, Germany, Croatia and Austria in the process.
Knowing that Switzerland generally do tend to struggle for goals, we have to see Brazil’s clean sheet as by far the best of the betting options, set at the odds of 1.85. La Nati also hardly concede goals and they proved their defensive stability by holding the full-strength Spain to a 1-1 draw in recent friendly earlier this month. They backed up such result with a 2-0 victory over fellow World Cup contestants Japan later on and we can say Vladimir Petkovic and his men will enter the tournament high on confidence.
Switzerland will likely park the bus which is why we do find the value in backing the Under 2.5 goals FT bet at the odds of 1.90 here.
Predicted Full-Time Result is a narrow victory for Brazil who could break the deadlock late on with Neymar’s moment of magic.
Brazil vs Switzerland Betting Tips
Brazil to keep a clean sheet @ 1.85.
Under 2.5 goals FT @ 1.90.
Correct FT Score: 1-0 Brazil @ 5.50.