World Cup Picks — Could Brazil-Belgium Match Be a Shootout?


Four years ago Brazil suffered the indignity of getting blown out in their own country in the World Cup semi-finals. And they have been on a mission to make up for that. As they take the pitch on Friday against Belgium, they see an opportunity to start making up for that, as some of the teams considers to be among the favorites have been unexpectedly ousted. This quarterfinal game will get underway at 2 PM ET at Kazan, and VietBet customers will have an opportunity to place wagers even after it begins as they access the state-of-the-art software from Live Betting Ultra.

Brazil actually began this tournament rather inauspiciously with a 1-1 draw against Switzerland, but they have been spotless since, not only winning three consecutive games but also keeping the opposition scoreless during that time. The 2-0 win over Mexico included a goal by substitute Roberto Firmino. While the Selecao has some of the most outstanding weapons in the tournament, including the superstar Neymar, it is their proficiency on defense that has generated the most buzz.

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How good is Neymar? Well, he was the subject of the most most expensive transfer in history, as Real Madrid bought his contract from Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) for a whopping $360 million. There is no escaping that he is going to be a factor.

Coutinho has been outstanding as well, and Fernandinho, a star with Manchester City in the Premier League, will step in for the suspended Casemiro, so the Brazilians may not miss a beat. And this puts extra pressure on Belgium, which may have a shaky defense and allowed Japan too many scoring opportunities in their come-from-behind 3-2 win; opportunities that Brazil could capitalize on.

In the World Cup betting odds on this game, as they have been posted by the people at VietBet, Brazil is the favorite:

Brazil Advances -165
Belgium Advances +150

Brazil +116
Belgium +275
Draw +246

Under 2.5 Goals -117
Over 2.5 Goals +102

Belgium is known for its offensive punch, and what was particularly impressive was that they were able to come back from two goals down to beat Japan in regulation. That’s the first time that has happened since 1970. And Roberto Martinez, who for the most part has been a major improvement over his predecessor, Marc Wilmots, as Belgium’s coach, made rather sage substitutions in the second half, as both Marouani Felliani and Nacer Chadli scored goals. There was also an amazing header from defender Jan Vertonghen that got things going for the Red Devils in the second half.

Belgium has one of the more formidable front lines in the world, as Eden Hazard, Romelu Lukaku and Dries Mertens can play on anybody’s field. This is a test for the Brazilian defense, which permitted Mexico to have only ONE shot on target in their shutout win. So there is no question that we have a contrast in styles. But while Belgium has some coordination problems on the defensive end, including the aging Vincent Kompany, Tite’s Brazilian side has more than enough weapons to take advantage of available opportunities.

Sure, Brazil would have the edge in this matchup, and we may also expect some scoring, so take a long look at the “over” as well.

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