Today, hosts Brazil will take on Mexico in one of the most anticipated matches of the first round as Mexico have always found a way to thwart Brazil and on the international stage. Both teams will be full of confidence and know that victory in this match would see them qualify for the second round.
Brazil would go into the match with Neymar and Oscar red hot from their win over Croatia and Paulinho and Gustavo would be looking to build on a solid display in the opening match. The Brazilians would however be wary of their defensive frailties as Dani Alves and Marcelo have a tendency to overlap and David Luiz positional play is usually suspect, they could get caught out of position more often than not by Mexico’s swift counter attacking.
Mexico are easily one of the best teams in terms of soaking pressure and hitting on the break with serious pace in Guardado and Hector Herrera, and some of the world’s deadliest poachers in Dos Santos, Hernandez and Peralta. They however have to be wary of the directness and skill of Willian and Oscar. Should Scolari decide to introduce Ramirez and let Gustavo sit deep all game, the Mexican counter attacking threat could be drastically reduced and if Neymar keeps cutting in as he favours to do, Marques and Moreno could be exposed for their lack of pace.
Brazil have the upper hand in this one with the support of their home fans and a squad that has the tendency to get better as a tournament progresses, it will take a stellar shift from the Mexican players as well as some brilliance in tactics from Miguel Herrera to give Mexico a chance in this match.