Spain vs Brazil: Preview and Prediction

Spain will be eager to return to winning ways when they welcome Brazil to the Santiago Bernabeu on Tuesday.

The international break ends in a couple of days, but several eye-catching fixtures remain before players return to their clubs. Tuesday will feature England vs Belgium and Germany vs the Netherlands. But an even more mouthwatering match will pit Spain against Brazil at the Santiago Bernabeu.

The two teams will participate in quadrennial multi-team tournaments this summer. So, the midweek fixture is crucial for their head coaches to get their preparations in order and build momentum. Spain will take part in the UEFA Euro 2024 after topping Group A of the Qualifiers, winning seven games and losing once.

But Luis de la Fuente is yet to zero in on his ideal team, considering he named an experimental eleven against Colombia. However, he should field a full-strength team against Brazil, who will participate in this summer’s Copa America. And Dorival Junior got his reign underway this past weekend with a 1-0 win over England at Wembley.

Spain last hosted Brazil in a friendly at Balaidos in 1999, with the game ending in a goalless stalemate. The Hard Tackle takes a closer look at the encounter ahead of the latest meeting between the two sides.

Team News & Tactics


Luis de la Fuente does not have any new issues hampering his preparations ahead of his side’s latest fixture. Against Brazil at the Santiago Bernabeu, Spain’s head coach should have an unchanged squad.

Jose Gaya had pulled out from the squad before the game against Colombia, while Gavi is a long-term absentee due to a knee injury. But Rodri might not be available after missing training on Monday due to a personal issue. Meanwhile, Unai Simon should replace David Raya between the sticks, with Spain lining up in a 4-3-3 formation in front of him against Brazil.

The backline should see a couple of changes, with Dani Carvajal replacing Pedro Porro at right-back, while Robin Le Normand will join Aymeric Laporte at the heart of the defence. Alejandro Grimaldo should be the left-back.

As for the midfield unit, Fabian Ruiz and Oihan Sancet should return to the team to join Mikel Merino in the middle of the park. Alvaro Morata should lead the line for Spain against Brazil, with Joselu dropping to the bench. Nico Williams and Dani Olmo should accompany Spain’s captain in the final third.

Probable Lineup (4-3-3): Simon; Carvajal, Le Normand, Laporte, Grimaldo; Ruiz, Merino, Sancet; Olmo, Morata, Nico Williams


Dorival Junior is sweating over the fitness of Richarlison, with the Tottenham Hotspur attacker struggling with a knee issue. In addition, Brazil’s head coach will be without other top stars like Alisson Becker, Marquinhos, Eder Militao, Casemiro, and Neymar, among others.

Bento deputised well for Alisson and Ederson Moraes between the sticks and will retain his spot against Spain. Brazil should line up in a 4-3-3 formation against Spain, with the system seemingly the preferred setup for Dorival Junior.

Brazil’s new head coach does not have much time to finalise his ideal squad heading into this summer’s Copa America. So, he should make several changes to the starting eleven on Tuesday as he continues his preparations. The backline should see a couple of shuffles, with Gleison Bremer and Ayrton Lucas joining Lucas Beraldo and Danilo, replacing Fabricio Bruno and Wendell.

As for the midfield unit, Douglas Luiz should return, replacing Joao Gomes in the middle of the park. But Bruno Guimaraes and Lucas Paqueta are seemingly the first-choice options for Dorival Junior. Finally, Pepe should get the nod over Raphinha on the right flank, with the FC Porto wide attacker joining Rodrygo and Vinicius Junior in the offensive trifecta.

Probable Lineup (4-3-3): Bento; Danilo, Bremer, Lucas, Wendell; Paqueta, Guimaraes, Luiz; Pepe, Rodrygo, Vinicius Jr

Key Stats

  • Tuesday’s match will be the tenth meeting between Spain and Brazil, with the Selecao winning half of those games (D2 L2). Spain won the first match-up, meaning they have emerged victorious in only one of the subsequent nine.
  • Spain have failed to score in five of their last six meetings against the visitors in all competitions, although they have kept three clean sheets.
  • Brazil have won 11 of their last 12 international friendlies against national teams from Europe.
  • Those 12 friendlies have seen Brazil being prolific in the final third, finding the back of the net 26 times. Meanwhile, they have conceded only four goals.
  • The 1-0 defeat to Colombia this past weekend was only the second loss that Luis de la Fuente has overseen since replacing Luis Enrique (W8 D1) and ended a six-game winning run.

Player to Watch

Alvaro Morata

Embed from Getty Images

Endrick was a candidate for this section after scripting history against England with his match-winning goal. But we have gone ahead with Alvaro Morata as our player to watch due to Spain’s growing dependence on him.

Most importantly, the Atletico Madrid striker has embraced the added responsibility of being the captain of his national side. Donning the armband has brought the best out of the 31-year-old, who will be eager to make his mark and inspire Spain back to winning ways.


Spain 1-0 Brazil

Brazil might have the upper hand in the head-to-head record, but the last two meetings in Spain have seen La Roja keep a clean sheet. In addition, Luis de la Fuente has an impeccable record since replacing Luis Enrique, losing just once in 11 outings.

Meanwhile, the South American behemoths have not been consistent since Tite’s departure, with goals often coming at a premium. With Luis de la Fuente likely to name his strongest team, Spain should keep Brazil at bay and keep another clean sheet. There might not be much to replace the two teams, and The Hard Tackle predicts a 1-0 win for the home side.

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