A Brazil squad fresh from their victory against Ecuador host a Colombia squad who have won their last three consecutive matches, in the CONMEBOL 2018 World Cup Qualifiers.
Brazil are currently fifth in the qualifying standings with twelve points, having won three, drawn three and lost one. Coach Tite will go in search of back-to-back World Cup qualifying wins. The former Corinthians boss, who replaced Dunga in June, takes charge of his country on home soil for the first time and will be looking to build on last week’s 3-0 victory in Ecuador.
Brazil had struggled to find wins in their first few match days of the CONMEBOL World Cup qualifiers with a loss and three draws, but have now found their foot after brushing aside Ecuador 3-0 in their last match.
Meanwhile, Jose Pekerman’s Colombia are currently a point and two places ahead of their opponents in the table following last week’s 2-0 success over Venezuela. They will want to upset Brazil at at the Arena da Amazônia in Manaus and move onto the top of the standings.
Dani Alves will captain Brazil, coach Tite has confirmed. Miranda captained the side in Thursday’s victory over Ecuador and Tite’s decision to pass the armband on to Dani Alves confirms the coach’s promise to rotate the captaincy, as he did at Corinthians last year.
Former captain Neymar stated his desire to step down as skipper after leading Brazil to Olympic gold last month and, rather than appoint a new regular captain, Tite insisted he would pass the honour around a squad ‘full of leaders’.
The starting lineup will be the same as against Ecuador with Gabriel Jesus and Neymar leading the attack. The experience of Marcelo and Dany Alves will be available at the back while Casemiro and Willian would want to continue with the good form that they are displaying for Real Madrid and Chelsea.
Probable lineup (4-1-4-1) : Alisson; Alves, Marquinhos, Miranda, Marcelo; Casemiro; Willian, Augusto, Paulinho, Neymar; Jesus
Player to watch out for : Gabriel Jesus
Jesus was in red hot form in the last match scoring a brace. His presence has helped Brazil a lot, with his pace and ability to fox defenders. While most people count on Neymar, Jesus will definitely have a say in how Brazil perform.
Colombia beat Brazil 1-0 the last time side’s met, during the group stage of last year’s Copa America in Chile. Colombian football is enjoying a resurgence, with the likes of James Rodriguez, Juan Cuadrado and Carlos Bacca leading the most promising generation.
Midfielder and team captain James Rodriguez made his presence felt in the international scene after scoring one and assisting another against Venezuela. He and Carlos Bacca will shoulder the responsibility of leading the attack as Colombia will look to make it four wins on the trot.
Probable Lineup (4-2-3-1) : Ospina; Medina, J. Murillo, O. Murillo, Diaz; D. Torres, Sanchez; Rodriguez, M. Torres, Muriel; Bacca
Player to watch out for : James Rodriguez
Rodriguez has always come up with the goods for his country, and has been in fine form. If anyone can lead from the front, it is the Real Madrid forward. He is expected to come all guns blazing for this one and Colombia will look at him for inspiration to upset a formidable host in the form of Brazil.
- Colombia have not won on Brazilian soil for 71 years.
- Brazil lost 0-1 the last time the two sides met
- The last time these two sides met in Brazil was during the FIFA 2014 world cup, a match in which the hosts edged out the visitors 2-1.
Brazil 1 – 1 Colombia
This one is too close to call. The teams are balances and while on the whole, it should be a good watch, it will be very difficult to pick a winner. Colombia have not won in Brazil for 71 years, but on paper, no one holds the edge over the other.
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