Brazil v Croatia – June 3rd 2018 – Betting Tip
Liverpool’s Anfield will play host to one of the most thrilling pre-World Cup friendlies on Sunday when the star-studded Brazil will take on the immensely-talented European hopefuls Croatia. The clash promises goals on paper as both teams, especially Brazil, have a super strong firepower on display in the final third.
Croatia’s main strength comes from the center of the park made by Barcelona and Real Madrid stars. We’ll go through squads you can expect on the pitch on Sunday aiming to help you cherry pick the best of the sports betting strategies. Check out our betting tips below.
Tite’s troops cruised their way to top the South American World Cup Qualifiers in a super strong fashion. They finished the campaign ten points clear off the second-placed Uruguay and they will travel to Russia as one of the main contenders for the crown.
The clash with Croatia will likely mark Neymar’s return on the pitch after a lengthy injury which kept the PSG star man sidelined for more than three months. The world’s most expensive player appears to have completely recovered and he could likely get some minutes on the pitch here.
Apart from Neymar, Tite has a wide depth of super-quality players all over the place. As many as 14 players of a 23-man squad clinched silverwares in their domestic campaigns which best describes the strength of this Brazilian side. Three of them took on each other in the Champions League final as Roberto Firmino battled the likes of Marcelo and Casemiro in quest of the most appreciated trophy on the European soil.
Even though the attacking line looks lethal with the likes of Philippe Coutinho, Willian, Neymar, Roberto Firmino and Gabriel Jesus as main offensively-oriented players, it’s the defense which brought fairly impressive results for Tite’s side in recent friendlies as Selecao did not concede a single goal in last three matches against the likes of England, Russia and Germany.
Croatia will travel to Russia with high ambitions considering the amount of quality the head coach Zlatko Dalic has on disposal. Most experts believe this Croatian squad beats the one which took the glory by winning the third place at the World Cup in France in 1998. Nevertheless, it all depends on the chemistry which could well be improved with a confidence-boosting win over one of the main title contenders at Anfield.
As mentioned above, the Blazers will rely heavily on the star-studded midfield with the likes of Luka Modric, Mateo Kovacic and Ivan Rakitic in their ranks. The attacking line also looks solid with Mario Mandzukic, Andrej Kramaric, Ante Rebic and Nikola Kalinic, but troubles might pop up at the back where team lacks the quality to match the strongest teams out there.
Dejan Lovren is the key man at the back, but we all know how prone to mistakes he actually is and we doubt the Blazers will be able hold Brazilian forwards here.
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Head to Head and Stats
Brazil have won two and drawn one of three head to head affairs with Croatia so far. The sides first met in a friendly back in 2005 when the Blazers managed to hold the favorites to a 1-1 draw on the home soil. Brazil took a narrow 1-0 win in the group stages of the 2006 World Cup in Germany thanks to a goal from Kaka.
Finally, the two sides last met four years ago at the World Cup in Brazil. Croatia got off to a dream start when Marcelo scored an own goal, but Neymar inspired the comeback netting two goals later on to open up the way for the 3-1 win in the curtain raiser for the host nation.
Out Tips and Predictions
Brazil have been much more consistent over the past couple of years and we have to see them as favourites for the win here. Croatia’s form has seen quite a few stumbling blocks during the WC Qualification campaign where they barely managed to finish second behind Iceland to book the play-offs ties with Greece (4-1 win on aggregate).
The lack of consistency could have been noticed in a friendly against Peru in March when Croatia fell 2-0 in what was one of the weakest displays they’ve shown in years even though all of the main stars were in the starting lineup.
We’ll thus back Brazil to win as the main betting option at the odds of 1.61 (8/13). Top Betting Sites in Kenya offer the same odds on Selecao to net two or more goals here which is a nice alternative looking at how powerful Tite’s attacking line looks.