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Quarterfinals: Brazil vs Belgium

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BBC preview: https://www.bbc.com/sport/football/44652178

 

Brazil manager Tite has already confirmed the Brazilian lineup, Miranda will be the captain this time:

Quote

Alisson; Fagner, Thiago Silva, Miranda, Marcelo; Fernandinho; Paulinho, Coutinho, Willian, Neymar; Gabriel Jesus

Lineups:

Dhb8hvVWsAIN-UT.jpg

In 2002 Brazil beat Belgium 2-0 in the round of 16.

 

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As I've already said a few days ago, if Martinez doesn't make drastic changes in how Belgium defends, Brazil will have an easy time.

If Carrasco plays on WB again, Brazil by 2 or 3 goals.

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I have a feeling that Martinez will drop 3 at the back and go for same formation and shape he played last 30 or so minutes vs Japan. Verthongen on the left, Munier at the right, Kompany and Toby at cb with Witsel as anchor, KdB as dlp and Fella at amc. 

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I thought Chadli coming in for Carrasco was a personnel change rather than a formation one? Chadli is considered a wing back by Martinez in this Belgium side. I think Martinez won't change the formation. Apart from Chadli coming in for Carrasco at LWB, I think Martinez will field the same XI he did against Japan.

Another option might be playing Fellainiesta from the start ahead of Mertens. I thought the big dude played well against England and made an impact against Japan for Martinez to actually consider starting him.

And honestly, I don't know what Witsel offers that Dembele doesn't. If Witsel's role is to anchor the midfield for De Bruyne to run free, than something isn't right because KDB while has been doing fine, is not performing to his max potential. He's basically the opposite of Pogba's situation for France and United.

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4 minutes ago, adhikapp said:

I thought Chadli coming in for Carrasco was a personnel change rather than a formation one? Chadli is considered a wing back by Martinez in this Belgium side. I think Martinez won't change the formation. Apart from Chadli coming in for Carrasco at LWB, I think Martinez will field the same XI he did against Japan.

Another option might be playing Fellainiesta from the start ahead of Mertens. I thought the big dude played well against England and made an impact against Japan for Martinez to actually consider starting him.

And honestly, I don't know what Witsel offers that Dembele doesn't. If Witsel's role is to anchor the midfield for De Bruyne to run free, than something isn't right because KDB while has been doing fine, is not performing to his max potential. He's basically the opposite of Pogba's situation for France and United.

KDB appears unhappy with the role Martinez is asking him to play. He definitely would be more suited to playing further forward, or at least in a 3 man midfield to allow Belgium more options, giving KDB more space. 

Japan showed that a compact but organised pressing midfield centred around KDB can take him right out of the game. He always had someone within 5 yards of him. As a City fan I cannot wait to see KDB Vs. Fernandinho - they both know each other's game so well... I could maybe see Ferna getting a red if he plays the full game :D

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KdB is just way too deep for Belgium. He often comes back to collect the ball from cb's. Imo, this is one of Martinez's biggest mistakes. It was Radja who should've connect the lines and left KdB to do what he do best, creating magic at amc, much closer to Hazard and Lukaku.

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Dembele, KdB, Rajda is would be way better than current setup.

But hey, what do we know. It's all part of Martinez's masterplan.

Hopefully they get battered just because he's such a dislikeable turd.

Nothing I hate more than coaches who try to be abstract when managing teams with top level players.

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3 minutes ago, GunmaN1905 said:

Dembele, KdB, Rajda is would be way better than current setup.

But hey, what do we know. It's all part of Martinez's masterplan.

Hopefully they get battered just because he's such a dislikeable turd.

Nothing I hate more than coaches who try to be abstract when managing teams with top level players.

I don't think he's trying to be abstract. 

This is a total case of "Damned if he does, Damned if he doesn't", isn't it? Who should he play LWB? If he does play your 3 man midfield as suggested, he has to drop an attacker. Or drop a defender. To do that he has to play someone dodgy at LWB anyway, or if he plays 4 at the back, he has to drop Vertonghen or play him at LB where he can be exposed due to lack of pace and his enjoyment of getting forward from LB  (surprisingly a lot). 

He's doing the best with what he has and attempting to play to the strengths of the squad. On paper his idea is perfect - KDB, Hazard, Mertens, Lukaku sounds amazing. It would work too, if there was more support in the midfield. But then he can't have that extra supporting midfielder without dropping Mertens, or playing Vertonghen out of position. 

I really do feel for Martinez. I think he's quite a likable character (And I say that as someone who despised him for years for his Wigan side and that FA Cup final...) and whenever he's been a pundit he always seemed knowledgeable. 

People can get angry about Radja not going but is it any really different to the situations surrounding Sané and Germany, Benzema and France, Fabregas and Spain, Icardi and Argentina? Probably other examples too. 

I think Belgium's game have been exciting for the most part and, as the top scorers in the competition, it's no surprise that they play quite attacking football, on the front foot. They're probably the most exciting team in the competition, they are for me anyway 

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Why should he even play a bloody LWB if he doesn't have anyone suited for the position?
Jordan Lukaku for example plays LWB for Lazio.
He's a pretty dumb player tactically, but at least works his ass of and has physical tools to be useful in defense.
Good offensive contribution. Certainly a lot more useful than Carrasco in that position.

Why does he literally say on press conference that he didn't take Nainggolan because Mertens is better?
How can you be such a turd and compare those two?

It's perfect on paper if you could switch players for every defensive possession.
As I wrote already, front 3 is lazy and they don't contribute in defense.
They basically don't have a single useful defensive player in midfield or upfront except for Meuiner.
You can't win WC without defense.

Mertens is useless in big games. Again, as I wrote already, this season he scored 1 goal in 12 games against other top teams in Italy. One.

Radja is a different situation.
Sane tried to be clever with Low and dodged Confederations Cup.
Benzema had his fingers (no pun intended) in those rape scandals and did that sh** to Valbuena.
Fabregas is done.
Argentinian players don't like Icardi.

And when Radja was left out every Belgian player was in disbelief and shocked. There were even news of them asking Martinez why.
Even Radja said that it was his dream just to feel the world cup and play one minute, even if he didn't start.

They've been an exciting team, no denying that. But against which opposition?

- Lost against Wales and Italy on the last EURO.

- Were in probably the easiest group in qualifiers (Greece, B&H, Estonia, Cyprus, Gibraltar).

- Were in the easiest group on WC and battered two amateur teams and won against England that didn't want to win.

- Conceded 2 goals and a few more chances against average Japanese side.

And yet people bloody put them as top favorites even if they haven't beaten a single great team in an official game for years.

 

Edited by GunmaN1905

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Whole lot of text but regarding LWB - he needs SOMEONE to play either LWB or LB. He has nobody able to do that bar Vertonghen who as I said can be easily exploited. 

Also love that Japan are an average side when they proved the other night that they aren't average at all. 

E: also not sure anyone has Belgium as top favourites. Other than me and I'm a blithering idiot. :D

Edited by JDownie

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Just now, JDownie said:

Whole lot of text but regarding LWB - he needs SOMEONE to play either LWB or LB. He has nobody able to do that bar Vertonghen who as I said can be easily exploited. 

Also love that Japan are an average side when they proved the other night that they aren't average at all. 

Japan also beat Colombia, which England didn't manage to do.

But Belgium shouldn't have let them score twice, if they do this against Brazil, the match will end up 0-3 or so, rather than 3-2 for Belgium...

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3 minutes ago, JDownie said:

Whole lot of text but regarding LWB - he needs SOMEONE to play either LWB or LB. He has nobody able to do that bar Vertonghen who as I said can be easily exploited.  

Also love that Japan are an average side when they proved the other night that they aren't average at all. 

I added the Lukaku bit.
If you're stuck with your beliefs that X formation should be played and players have to do certain roles, then at least take players who are familiar with those roles.

Yeah, they didn't look average because Belgium is terrible when they have to defend. In every phase. From trying to regain possession to defending counter attacks.

Did you watch them against Poland? A team that was already eliminated handily beat them.

1 minute ago, PMLF said:

Japan also beat Colombia, which England didn't manage to do.

But Belgium shouldn't have let them score twice, if they do this against Brazil, the match will end up 0-3 or so, rather than 3-2 for Belgium...

That was due to playing with a man and a goal up from the start. And yet they failed to control the game.

Edited by GunmaN1905

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Just now, PMLF said:

Japan also beat Colombia, which England didn't manage to do.

But Belgium shouldn't have let them score twice, if they do this against Brazil, the match will end up 0-3 or so, rather than 3-2 for Belgium...

To be fair Inui's goal was out of the ordinary. It was a fantastic goal. 

I will be very surprised if either team keeps a clean sheet to be honest. 

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3 minutes ago, Baptista_8 said:

Brazil love an early lineup announcement.

It's because there is no surprise at all, everyone knew it would be this lineup.

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6 minutes ago, JDownie said:

To be fair Inui's goal was out of the ordinary. It was a fantastic goal. 

I will be very surprised if either team keeps a clean sheet to be honest. 

Great shot, but why was Japan player allowed to freely shoot from there?
Rewatching it now.
Kompany heads the cross out of the box, Kagawa has agreat first touch, but is closed down by Witsel and can't do much.
Passes it to Inui who's completely free to do whatever he pleases, while KdB is casually walking and hoping Witsel gets the ball during that whole sequence.
Witsel went to close down Inui after Kagawa passes to him and KdB was still just acting as if he was playing some casual 5v5.

He can't play that role. I mean you can put him there, but they will be exposed against Brazil.

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1 hour ago, GunmaN1905 said:

Why should he even play a bloody LWB if he doesn't have anyone suited for the position?
Jordan Lukaku for example plays LWB for Lazio.
He's a pretty dumb player tactically, but at least works his ass of and has physical tools to be useful in defense.
Good offensive contribution. Certainly a lot more useful than Carrasco in that position.

I read Jordan Lukaku wasn't included because he wasn't entirely fit to be included into the squad. Would've been included ahead of Chadli.

1 hour ago, GunmaN1905 said:

Why does he literally say on press conference that he didn't take Nainggolan because Mertens is better?
How can you be such a turd and compare those two?

It's perfect on paper if you could switch players for every defensive possession.
As I wrote already, front 3 is lazy and they don't contribute in defense.
They basically don't have a single useful defensive player in midfield or upfront except for Meuiner.
You can't win WC without defense.

Mertens is useless in big games. Again, as I wrote already, this season he scored 1 goal in 12 games against other top teams in Italy. One.

He sees Nainggolan as a someone who plays in the same position as Mertens for the national team in the current set-up he made. I don't agree with it either, but if he considered in the front 3, he would be better in defensive contribution, something Mertens or the other forwards Martinez's brought to Russia. Martinez was never a good defensive coach as shown by his time at Wigan and Everton. He hoped he could get away with playing three world class CBs and almost got punished against Japan, if not for Fellaini and Chadli.

1 hour ago, GunmaN1905 said:

Radja is a different situation.
Sane tried to be clever with Low and dodged Confederations Cup.
Benzema had his fingers (no pun intended) in those rape scandals and did that sh** to Valbuena.
Fabregas is done.
Argentinian players don't like Icardi.

Radja's exclusion might be fueled by personal hatred Martinez has on Nainggolan's lifestyle, but it's hardly different to the other ones you mentioned. Martinez called him up in his last squad before the World Cup, so the heat may have subsided anyways.

Brandt was included ahead of Sane by Low for footballing reasons based off his words. Despite what they have shown this World Cup, that Germany team is stacked in the midfield and attack. Sane's inclusion would not have made a difference. Low's inclusions were right, his tactics weren't.

Benzema could've still been useful in spite of the attacking riches France has. He should've been included anyways because Valbuena won't get near that team nowadays.

Fabregas is more a victim of Spain having so many options in midfield that those who are included are more down to the manager's taste. I could name a handful of Spanish midfield exclusions that would make the England squad.

Icardi is more down to politics, but he was included in the provisional squad. It's hard to imagine Messi etc not be professionals over the inclusion of Icardi when there's a World Cup at stake. Hell if I was Messi, I'd be more angry about "why the **** do I have to play with Meza?" than being on the same team as Mr. Steal Yo Girl. That's another discussion.

Sane and Fabregas missed out due to selections based on footballing reasons. Benzema and Icardi due to political reasons. Radja seems to fall somewhere in the former.

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@PMLF I heard there was quite a lot of talk of dropping Jesus in Brazil. Isn't he like the only striker to never score a goal in the group stages for Brazil? 

Edited by Bliss Seeker

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6 minutes ago, Bliss Seeker said:

@PMLF I heard there was quite a lot of talk of dropping Jesus in Brazil. Isn't he like the only striker to never score a goal in the group stages for Brazil? 

The only talk was in foreign press, Tite and the rest of the squad are very happy with Gabriel.

It's true other strikers scored for Brazil in the group stage and he didn't, but let's not forget that he helps in other ways and that Brazil have only scored 7 goals in 4 games, which not very impressive.

 

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Belgium disappointed the **** out of me against Japan, I still think they're probably the best attacking team of the tournament but their defensive stance is worse than I expected, just very vulnerable. I feel their only gameplan will be to try to outscore the opposition and good luck against a Brazil side that's super solid at the back. Can't see how they can get beyond this game but I hope they surprise me, as they're fun to watch and the kind of team I'd love to see emerge as half-surprising champions or finalists. 

Edited by noikeee

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As said numerous times, Belgium doesn't have the defense to play with the 'big boys'. Their attacking talent can outscore any mediocre side but we will get battered by a team like Brazil I feel. But I have to feel hopefull, in football anything is possible and on a very good day we could beat anyone. Hopefully it's one of those days.

About Jordan Lukaku, he wasn't fit enough to be included or he would have I think. But he isn't that much better then what we have now. Although I'm not a fan at all of Carassco, he's not good enough on all fronts.

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8 hours ago, Bliss Seeker said:

@PMLF I heard there was quite a lot of talk of dropping Jesus in Brazil. Isn't he like the only striker to never score a goal in the group stages for Brazil? 

You mistook Brazil for Liverpool 

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I thought that Belgium could have given Brazil a good game, but after watching them against Japan I just can't see how they get through this with that defence unless Brazil have a stinker (not out of the question) and the likes of De Bruyne, Hazard and Lukaku are really on fire and take every little chance they get to create/score. This is the kind of game where if Lukaku gets a clear cut chance he simple has to put it away. 

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If Fellaini or Kompany are gonna man-mark Neymar then we could have a fun game.

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15 minutes ago, Heartwork said:

If Fellaini or Kompany are gonna man-mark Neymar then we could have a fun game.

Kompany plays the central of 3 CBs, whilst Neymar features LW. It'll be Alderweireld and Meunier who are primarily concerned with Neymar. 

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I think Brazil will do the job tonight.

France - Brazil would be an exciting match to enjoy watching.

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Lineups:

Dhb8hvVWsAIN-UT.jpg

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20 hours ago, adhikapp said:

I thought Chadli coming in for Carrasco was a personnel change rather than a formation one? Chadli is considered a wing back by Martinez in this Belgium side. I think Martinez won't change the formation. Apart from Chadli coming in for Carrasco at LWB, I think Martinez will field the same XI he did against Japan.

Another option might be playing Fellainiesta from the start ahead of Mertens. I thought the big dude played well against England and made an impact against Japan for Martinez to actually consider starting him.

And honestly, I don't know what Witsel offers that Dembele doesn't. If Witsel's role is to anchor the midfield for De Bruyne to run free, than something isn't right because KDB while has been doing fine, is not performing to his max potential. He's basically the opposite of Pogba's situation for France and United.

 

Called it.

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I normally like watching Brazil, but the sooner I can stop watching Neymar roll about the better

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It would make a good drinking game. Do a shot every time Neymar does a roll.

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This could be a classic, but I'm going for a narrow 2-1 Brazil win. Hopefully somebody will stand up to Neymar if he tries any more theatrics.

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1 minute ago, Redshift said:

It would make a good drinking game. Do a shot every time Neymar does a roll.

I'd end up dead at half time

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2 minutes ago, Redshift said:

It would make a good drinking game. Do a shot every time Neymar does a roll.

Not if you value your health :D

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The longer Brazil persevere with Jesus over Firmino the more I want them to go out. Bobby should be starting :(  

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Just now, DeafParrot said:

The longer Brazil persevere with Jesus over Firmino the more I want them to go out. Bobby should be starting :(  

Start a petition.

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Just now, DeafParrot said:

The longer Brazil persevere with Jesus over Firmino the more I want them to go out. Bobby should be starting :(  

Firmino is playing for the wrong national team, he should be playing for Germany or England.

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All hail tactical mastermind Martinez.

Bloody Fellaini and Radja watching at home.

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8 minutes ago, PMLF said:

Firmino is playing for the wrong national team, he should be playing for Germany or England.

Well no, he fits perfectly into this Brazil team. As evidenced by you being miles better every time he comes onto the pitch.

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