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World Cup

Brazil hope to overcome tricky Mexico in World cup last 16 tie

Brazil topped group H to get to the round of 16 (Photo by Agency)

FIFA World cup 2018

Brazil vs Mexico

Samara Arena, Russia

Monday, 02-07-2018 @05:00pm

Five time record world cup winners Brazil will hope they negotiate past Mexico in the round of 16 game to be played in the Samara Arena on Monday afternoon.

The Selecio had a not so convincing group stage display but looked to be growing with each passing game and eventually topped group H with seven points and scoring five goals whilst conceding only one.

Felipe Luis will start at left-back Mexico instead of Marcelo, who was forced off against Serbia because of a back spasm. The Real Madrid star did train on Sunday so should be available off the bench.

Right-back Danilo has recovered from the thigh problem that ruled him out of the Serbia game, but his replacement, Fagner, may keep his starting spot.

Mexico are without key centre-back Hector Moreno, who is suspended after accumulating two yellow cards. He could be replaced by Hugo Ayala, who has not featured since starting the win against Germany.

What they are saying before the game:

Tite, Brazil’s head coach.

“He played very, very well against Serbia, said Tite when asked about star forward Neymar.

“I told him that: ‘We know the price you have paid to climb back to this level.

“He did everything we asked tactically, defending the full-back, and looked for goal, to dribble, and run with the ball.

Neymar has scored just once in the opening three games.

Mexico head coach Juan Carlos Osorio.

“We won’t sit back and wait, Brazil’s attackers are too good for that to be the right plan.

“We will stick to our idea of having at least four or five attacking players.

The biggest concern for Mexico is that history suggests it doesn’t really matter who they play at this stage of a World Cup.

If they lose it will be the seventh successive tournament in which they have gone out in the last 16.

Match stats:

Head-to-head.

Brazil are unbeaten in their four previous World Cup games against Mexico (W3, D1), keeping clean sheets in all four of those matches.

The most recent World Cup encounter was a group game in 2014 which ended 0-0.

The sides have met once since then, with Brazil winning 2-0 in a friendly in Sao Paulo in June 2015 courtesy of goals from Philippe Coutinho and Diego Tardelli.

Brazil.

Brazil have never lost a World Cup game against opponents from central or north America.

Their last six defeats at World Cup finals have been to European sides. The last non-European side to beat Brazil at the tournament were Argentina in 1990, who won a last 16 tie thanks to a Claudio Caniggia goal.

That defeat in 1990 was also the last time Brazil failed to reach the quarter-finals of a World Cup.

They have kept clean sheets in seven of their last eight games (W6, D2).

Mexico.

Mexico’s only previous World Cup win against South American opposition was their 2-0 victory against Ecuador in the group stage in 2002.

Defeat would see Mexico eliminated in the last 16 for a seventh consecutive World Cup.

They last reached the quarter-finals as hosts in 1986, beating Bulgaria 2-0 in the last 16 before bowing out to West Germany.

This will be Mexico’s 57th World Cup game – more than any other side who have never won the tournament.

Javier Hernandez has only had one shot on target in 270 minutes at this year’s World Cup, although he did score from it, against South Korea.

Other match on Monday:

Belgium vs Japan @Rostov Arena, 09:00am

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