Brazil vs Netherlands Preview
After a whole month of non-stop football action from all across Brazil, we finally reach the closing stages of the competition. With the hopes and dreams of reaching the finals of the 2014 World Cup completely diminished, both the Netherlands and the host nation, Brazil, will look to salvage their missed opportunity on ultimate glory as they go head to head for the 3rd place finish at the Estádio Nacional de Brasilia in Brasília tomorrow.
The question is: Will the Dutch conquer and finish the tournament on a high or will the Selecao pull through and put on a show for their people to feel happy about?
This World Cup around has shown us that going into the match, stats and squad match ups don’t matter anymore. It’s only a display of who the better side is on that particular day.
After being humiliated 1-7 by the finalists, Germany, the hearts of many fans and people of Brazil, were shattered. Even during the match, most of the stadium, which comprised of the Selecao fans were seen crying as they watched a helpless and hapless Brazil be demolished by incredibly tactical and fast paced football.
The minute Germany’s first goal (Thomas Muller) went in, the momentum completely shifted. Speaking from a standard viewpoint, the reason for such a drastic score-line was mainly because of the poor show of the back four. The defense lacked in experience as well as physicality. It was proven that Thiago Silva’s presence as a player as well as captain played a huge role. For the entire team, his return to the squad for tomorrow’s game is a huge relief to everyone, especially David Luiz, who had a terrible night leading his side into an utter disaster which seemed inevitable of course.
Going into this match, coach, Luis Felipe Scolari, will look to pick up the fallen pieces of his squad and somehow manage to bring in one or possibly two players while replacing Hulk, who failed to play with his impressive strength that he possesses for Willian or Ramires who can play on the wings and drift into the box for possible goal attempts beating the Dutch defense with sheer pace. Possibly Fred might not start either, considering it’s the last game of the tournament and bringing in Jo might breathe some fresh air into an already broken team with their star striker and Barcelona forward, Neymar out of the World Cup.
Louis van Gaal, who was praised for his last minute gamble of a substitution which brought on Newcastle United keeper, Tim Krul to save the day against a relentless Costa Rica side, which they ultimately emerged victorious sending them through the semifinals was reeling with confidence. Their side was to be denied by the Argentina team who beat them on penalties 4-2 after a goalless draw.
Robben had a very horrendous game, to say the least, with so many chances wasted. Statistically speaking, the Oranje had played the game with too many back-passes and a push forward was just not within their limit. With the likes of van Persie, Kuyt and Robben up front, with playmaker Sneijder right behind for support, not scoring a single goal within 90 minutes of standard time shows how well the team was prepared and utilized for their showdown against Sabella and his South American side.
For their final match in this competition, van Gaal has to bring his team in and remind them of their demolishing status they had during the group stages. With Vlaar and de Vrij doing a fine job in the defense, it’s the lackluster midfield and attack which brings up a disappointing story to tell.
Nigel de Jong returned from injury and was on the pitch for the semifinals, surprisingly for a considerable amount of time. With Swansea City goalkeeper, Michel Vorm the only player left to play at this World Cup, the Dutchman have plenty of players to select the best possible XI.
Netherlands: Cillessen; Indi, Vlaar, Vrij; Blind, Wijnaldum, Guzman, Robben; Kuyt; Robben; van Persie (c)
Brazil: Cesar; Maicon; Luiz; Silva (c); Marcelo; Paulinho; Gustavo; Oscar; Willian; Bernard; Jo
• The Dutchman have lost 5 of 7 penalty shootouts in World Cups and European Championships.
• The Oranje will appear in their second third place game. (1998 1-2 loss vs. Croatia)
• Brazil have conceded most goals in the current World Cup campaign. (11)
• Brazil have won 2 and lost 1 of their previous 3 appearances in the third place match.
• The injured Neymar (13) is the only player who created more goal-scoring chances for Brazil than Marcelo. (10)
Brazil 1 – 2 Netherlands
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