Brazil will endeavour to keep their hopes of lifting a record-extending sixth world title alive when they lock buzzers with Croatia in the quarter-finals of the 2022 World Cup at Edification City Stadium on Friday.
The Selecao sent out a statement to the rest of the tournament when they breezed past South Korea in the last 16, while the Checkered Ones were pushed all the way by Japan before edging through on penalties.
Match: Croatia vs Brazil
Competition: FIFA World Cup (Quarter Final)
Kick Time: 15.00 GMT
Stadium: Education City Stadium (Al Rayyan (Ar-Rayyan))
Croatia vs Brazil preview
Brazil bounced back from the shock 1-0 loss to Cameroon in their last group stage match to thrash South Korea 4-1 in the first knockout game.
Vinicius Junior, Neymar, Richarlison and Lucas Paqueta were all on target as the Selecao dominated against the Asian side.
Croatia had a less than easy way into the final eight as they came up against Japan in the previous round.
Ivan Perisic pulled his team level after they fell behind late in the first half and forced extra time and penalties.
Goalkeeper Dominik Livakovic was the hero of the night for Zlatko Dalic’s team and they will be hoping for more heroics as they come up against the likes of Vinicius, Neymar and Richarlison.
- Brazil have never lost in four previous meetings with Croatia in all competitions (W3 D1), with this their first meeting since a 2-0 friendly win in June 2018.
- Croatia have lost four of their five World Cup games against South American sides, with the exception being a 3-0 win over Argentina in 2018. Two of those four defeats have been against Brazil – 1-0 in 2006 and 3-1 in 2014 (both group stages).
- Since beating Germany 2-0 in the final in 2002, Brazil have lost each of their last five World Cup knockout stage games against European nations, including three quarter-final ties in that run (France in 2006, Netherlands in 2010 and Belgium in 2018).
- In a run going back to EURO 2008, seven of Croatia’s last eight knockout stage games at major tournaments (World Cup and Euro) have gone to extra time, with the exception being the 2018 World Cup final. They’ve progressed from all four such games at the World Cup, three via penalty shootout.
- Brazil are looking to reach the World Cup semi-final for the ninth time, with only Germany (12) doing so more often. Meanwhile, Croatia have reached at least the last four of the competition on both previous occasions they’ve made it out of the group stages (1998 and 2018).
Croatia XI: Livakovic; Juranovic, Lovren, Gvardiol, Sosa; Kovacic, Brozovic, Modric; Kramaric, Petkovic, Perisic
Brazil XI: Alisson; Militao, Thiago Silva, Marquinhos, Danilo; Casemiro, Paqueta; Raphinha, Neymar, Vinicius Jr; Richarlison
Brazil vs Croatia Prediction
Brazil are on a roll and produced arguably the half of the tournament with their four-goal showing against South Korea, while Croatia could well be feeling the effects of fatigue after 120 minutes against Japan. Never count out the 2018 finalists and their never-say-die attitude, but the Selecao and their vast array of attacking talent should come out on top on this occasion.
Brazil 2-0 Croatia.
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