It’s been a World Cup in Brazil but whether it’s Brazil’s World Cup remains to be seen and in Colombia tonight they might have the toughest test of their tournament so far.
The Selecao were taken all the way to penalties against Chile in the last 1, but probably gave their best performance of the tournament in one of the best games we’ve seen so far throughought this World Cup, especially in a frantic first half when both teams, but espelcially Luis Felipe Scolari’s side, put pedal to the metal and crated a host of excellent chances before David Luiz’s opener with Neymar, the talisman, looking in fine form despite suffering two injuries as he buzzed with treat and menace from the first minute to the last. However Alexis Sanchez’s equaliser was a much needed boost and from then on the Chileans gave as good as they got in a frantic game that was thrilling to watch even if not technically as proficient as some others seen throughought the tournament.
But apart from that scrape – and Brazil are in the tournament thanks to the width of a crossbar saving the substitute Pinilla’s late piledriver – Brazil have not played like the hosts or favourites for the tournament and they face the Colombian side that has been the most impressive throughought the tournament. In topping Apart from the Netherlands, Colombia are the only other side with a 100% record (in 90 minutes) and, inspired by James Rodriguez, they disposed of Uruguay in the last 16 in style, riding out some significant late pressure when holding a deserved 2-0 lead. Tabarez’s side sat deep to frustrate then but it is unlikely Brazil will do the same thing and the absence of Luis Gustavo, the second name on the teamsheet after Neymar for more than two years, is a giant invitation for their midfielders to combat Brazil man for man as Chile did.
They can also share the same defensive issues as Chile at times, with both wingbacks – Amero and Cudrado – loving to attack, but both can run Brazil ragged too and we could be here for forever lining up attacking talents. Brazil have drawn twice in this tournament and were struggling to get past Croatia before Fred’s dive; Colombia can avoid defeat here and this may also be a more open encounter than typical last 16 encounters, so consider the 9/2 on Brazil winning and both teams scoring to hedge, and also an outright bet on both teams to score.
1.5 pts Colombia +1 (10/11 general)
1 pt Both teams to score (10/11 general)
1 pt Brazil to win and both teams to score (9/2 general)