Published: Fri, July 06, 2018
Sport | By Wendy Sparks

Belgium ready for defining game against Brazil, says Vincent Kompany

Belgium ready for defining game against Brazil, says Vincent Kompany

"We can enjoy it from the first minute", Martinez said. "I don't see that as a valid result".

"Whether it's going to be realistic, I don't know".

Belgium have a different manager, Roberto Martinez, but they also have plenty more football under their belts, and when they kick off against Brazil on Saturday, there will be a palpable sense that their time has to be now.

"But it's a dream match for our players, they were born to play in a match like this".

Brazil lost to France and the Netherlands in the quarter-finals of the 2006 and 2010 World Cups and was humiliated 7-1 by Germany in the semifinals four years ago at home.

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Russian Federation 2018 was the 33-year-old's third World Cup and it's unlikely he will be available for Qatar four years time. Argentina are looking to put their tricky World Cup start behind them against 1998 winners France in the last 16.

"The difference is we haven't won a World Cup - simple as that".

Although Luis put in a solid display against Mexico, Tite may be tempted to recall his preferred left back Marcelo, who missed the match with a back injury but returned to training.

Added to the fact this is the World Cup of penalties, with 27 being given, more than any other tournament, it could be time for Brazil to get their own.

"Taking penalties is a technique that is associated with emotional control", Tite said.

For Quartz editor and soccer fanatic Mike Murphy, France is the team to beat this World Cup. The first shootout came at the 1982 tournament in Spain.

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This combination of photos shows fans of Brazil (L) and Belgium supporting their team during the Russian Federation 2018 World Cup football tournament. But Belgium has arguably its best-ever team this year with strength in all positions.

Hazard has two goals and two assists to his name from three World Cup outings, while also earning the Man of the Match award from sponsors in the 3-2 comeback win over Japan last time out.

But their marauding finish, banging in three consecutive goals late in the tie to erase a 2-0 deficit, was a sobering reminder of the firepower at Roberto Martinez's disposal.

"But not one day do I go to bed thinking what if we lose", he said, though he also commented how the match would be as big for Brazil as it would for Belgium. "It's a very strong attacking team". Idon't think they will make the same errors and I expect a more cautious approach with the underdogs playing on the counter attack.

But, they were largely comfortable in their Round of 16 game against Mexico, as the Selecao saw of El Tri in an efficient 2-0 win.

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"I talked to Marcelo and Filipe Luis", said Tite. Set to replace Casemiro in the middle of the park, the Manchester City midfielder will have some big shoes to fill, although he is more than capable to fill in for Casemiro.

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