Brazil vs. Switzerland
|Date & Time||Sunday June 17, 2018, 2:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: SWI +836 / BRA -232 / Draw +369 -- Over/Under: 2.5
Switzerland and Brazil meet Sunday in World Cup soccer action at the Rostov Arena.
Switzerland is in its fourth straight World Cup appearance and hopes to make it out of the group stages for the third time in its last four tries. Switzerland enters this tournament in pretty good form, winning 10 of its last 13 matches and getting a positive result in each of its last six matches. Switzerland hasn’t lost a match since an October World Cup qualifier against Portugal. The National Team is a highly experienced club with 14 players with 20-plus caps, and this is a solid side defensively that’s produced a clean sheet in five of its last six matches. Switzerland does have a tendency to give up a lot of shots, but few are high quality and almost none find the back of the net, and it doesn’t hurt with Yann Sommer as the last line of defense. The issue for Switzerland is the offensive firepower, as Xherdan Shaqiri and Haris Seferovic are the only two double-digit scorers for this club and others have come up small on the big stage. Switzerland needs to find some scoring depth if this tournament will be a success.
Brazil has to be thrilled for another World Cup chance with the way things ended in 2014 on its home soil. Take that motivation and the form of this club that includes recent wins over Germany, Croatia and Austria, and the Brazilians are arguably the favorite to win the tournament this time around. Brazil is a very balanced team that has more depth around Neymar than it did four years ago. Yes, the 26-year-old is still the heartbeat of this team and the guy who needs to play at a high level for everyone else to thrive, but players such as Casemiro, Gabriel Alves and Marcelo are more than capable of removing some of that pressure. It’s also key for players to step up early in the tournament as Neymar looks to continue getting his fitness under him, as he only has a couple of matches under his belt since returning from a foot injury. Setting the tone early is key for the Brazilians.
There’s no previous meetings between these two sides.
While some of the recent competition hasn’t been great, Brazil is playing at a high level at the right time and has the offensive punch to bury teams with one great half of play. Switzerland is a respectable side that shows up defensively, but it also lacks any offensive threats that is going to scare Brazil in this match. Allowing this team to play its game without any serious threats of counters can be a dangerous game. This is clearly a tough opening match for Switzerland.
Give me Brazil by two or more goals.