BRAZIL vs. CROATIA
THURSDAY 12TH JUNE – SAO PAULO
It’s finally here, the 2014 World Cup is about to get underway. World Cup hosts Brazil are expected to line-up against Croatia with the same starting eleven that defeated Spain in last summer’s Confederations Cup final.
This means, despite his poor form, Chelsea’s playmaker Oscar is likely to start as the Brazilian media lobby for his Chelsea team-mate Willian. Niko Kovac’s Croatia will line-up without suspended striker Mario Mandzukic, so look to Ivica Olic to deputise with Nikica Jelavic or Eduardo on the bench. Sime Vrsaljko will start at left-back in place of the injured usual starter Danijel Pranjic.
The Croats head into the game with no pressure, whereas the Brazilians will enter a baptism of fire in Sao Paulo, in an arena where they were booed by their own supporters this time last year. I see the Croats frustrating Neymar, Fred and co and gaining a vital point in an uneasy opener for Luis Felipe Scolari’s men.
The draw gives our best bet a massive 9/2 from Bet365 so it’s worth a fiver to gain yourself a nice little pot for the weekend.
BEST BET: Draw (9/2 – Bet365)
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