The 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar is welcoming its quarterfinal stage starting tonight, with five teams from the European continent, two from the South American region and one from the African soil are set to fight against one another to create history and embark onto a further journey in this year’s competition. This tournament has seen many young and vibrant players replacing the old guards of their countries and producing moments of brilliance game after game in the group and knockout round fixtures, but for one of the teams that will kickstart the last 8 match tonight, Croatia, its veterans remained their most treasured pieces to overcome the challenges brought upon by their football nation counterparts.
Croatia vs Brazil this evening is the third meeting between the 2018 FIFA World Cup runner-up and the former five-time world champion in this celebrated competition. It is worth noting that in their previous four meetings against the Selecao, Croatia had never recorded a win and only scored two goals in total, whereas their South American opponent had won three out of those four matches, scoring seven goals in the process. History certainly does not favour the Kockasti, but can they finally make a breakthrough this time around?
Exhausted Golden Generation
Brazil may have fielded their oldest player ever in a World Cup in the form of Dani Alves, but the team is filled with volatile and bright stars whose talent knows no bounds and unafraid of taking on tough resistance from their opponent. On the other hand, Croatia, led by their 37-year-old midfielder Luka Modrić, used their experience as the biggest advantage to come out of their group as the runner-up, but they were put to test in the last game against the Samurai Blue, and was only able to overcome them through penalties with their heroic goalkeeper Dominik Livaković. Zlatko Dalić’s squad clearly ran out of gas.
Defence Is the Key, But Can They Stop Neymar and Co?
Two things are on Croatia’s side when they face the Selecao tonight: They are undefeated and only conceded the second-least goals (2) in four matches in this tournament. But let us not forget Brazil too had also let away the same amount of goals like their European counterparts, which means both teams are in solid form in terms of their backline. If anything, the Kockasti had not encountered a team with fierce and pacey attack in their past four games, so Brazil’s strike force, led by Paris Saint-Germain’s Neymar will breed fear to the Croatian defence even before the game. Will Modrić’s experienced midfield and Croatia’s mix of young and old blood in the backline able to withstand the Samba boys’ attack?
What Is Our Bold Prediction?
It is unfair to take sides in any matter in life, but exceptions should be made for a tournament like the FIFA World Cup. We believe a fit-again Neymar will inspire the Brazilians and his fellow attackers, including Vinícius Júnior, Richarlison, Raphinha, Gabriel Jesus, etc. to break up Zlatko Dalić’s defence en route to an easy win against last edition’s runner-up in the quarterfinal opener tonight. Do you agree with our prediction?
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(Photo Credits: DAZN)