Saturday 12th July 2014 17:00 LOC / 21:00 BST / Sun 13th July 06:00 AEST
Estadio Nacional Brasilia, Brazil
Neymar – LW/ST – Injured
Brazil will go into the game nobody wants to be part of hoping to restore some of their battered pride after the crushing defeat to Germany left the humiliated at their own tournament. The loss of Thiago Silva to suspension was often forgotten in the aftermath of Neymar getting injured but he probably proved to be the biggest difference for a Brazil team that had stumbled its way through the tournament. He is certain to return to captain the side in the third/fourth place play-off against the Dutch. Dante will drop out.
As it is Netherlands that Brazil are facing and not fierce rivals Argentina they are likely to make several changes. Jefferson may get a game in goal although as it could be Julio Cesar’s final cap he is likely to start. Dani Alves should return for Maicon at full back while David Luiz may be taken out of the spot light following his dismal performance against Germany and Henrique could be given a shot. Maxwell should come in on the left and Ramires may get a start alongside Gustavo in midfield with Marcelo and Fernandinho dropping out. Scolari has options in the middle and Paulinho or Hernanes could get some game time.
Willian should start on the right, something many people expected against Germany with Oscar moving centrally but Bernard could be given another run with Hulk missing out.
Fred is almost certain to miss out after fans booed him on Tuesday so Jo is likely to replace him.
Thiago Silva – CB – Suspension
Expected Team (4-2-3-1)
Bench (from): Jefferson GK, Victor GK, Maicon RB, Dante CB, Henrique CB, Marcelo LB, Fernandinho CM, Hernanes CM, Paulinho CM, Hulk RW/LW, Fred ST
Tactical Keys to the Game:
Motivational Keys to the Game:
The Brazilian fans turned on the team during the record defeat to Germany, the biggest margin Brazil have lost by since 1920. Fred was roundly booed every time he went near the ball and Brazil will have to start well to get the fans back on their side.
• Tired and disappointed after losing on penalties. Van Gaal claimed nobody wanted to take the first penalty.
• Van Gaal vehemently complained about the purpose of this game saying it was ‘unfair’ to make them play again. • Nigel de Jong made a stunning comeback after a Groin injury but is unlikely to be risked again.
The Dutch bowed out in the cruellest of circumstances as Argentina defeated them in a penalty shoot-out on Wednesday.
Questions will be raised over their character after van Gaal said that nobody wanted to step forward to take the first penalty, with Vlaar eventually doing so only to see his kick saved by Romero.
There are likely to be changes for the third/fourth place play-off with Janmaat starting on the right in place of Kuyt and Veltman could come into the centre of defence to give Vlaar’s knee a rest. Martins Indi should miss out as Netherlands switch back to a 4-3-3 but he could keep his place in the centre of defence instead of Vlaar.
Jordy Clasie could get a start, as Nigel de Jong is unlikely to be risked again in such a meaningless game; his recovery from a groin injury was nothing short of miraculous.
Depay should start on the left after some impressive performances throughout the tournament and Van Persie may be rested after a bout of illness with Klaas-Jan Huntelaar his likely replacement.
Tim Krul could be rewarded for his penalty shoot-out heroics against Costa Rica with a start in place of Jasper Cillessen.
Bench (from): Cillessen GK, Vorm GK, Verhaegh RB, Kongolo CB, Veltman CB, Martins Indi LB/CB, De Jong DM, de Guzman CM/RW, Fer CM/AM, Kuyt RW/ST, Huntelaar ST, Lens ST/LW
Tactical Keys to the Game:
Motivational Keys to the Game:
The Dutch are not likely to be incredibly motivated in this meaningless game. It will be Van Gaal’s last as manager so he may want to go out on a high but they could be overwhelmed by the Brazilians fast start. Van Gaal also said after the Argentine loss that he was not in favour of these 3rd place matches.
Football Form Labs Betting Preview: Brazil (6) v Netherlands (2)
Brazil and The Netherlands square off in the consolation match that no team wants to be playing in. The hosts were demolished by Germany in the first semi-final while Louis van Gaal’s side had to face the heartbreak of losing on penalties to Argentina. To further compound the lack of enthusiasm for either side here none of the expected starting XIs have a chance of winning the Golden Boot.
Brazil are the third home team to play in the consolation match in the last four editions of the World Cup after Germany in 2006 (a 3-1 win vs Portugal) and South Korea in 2002 (a 3-2 loss v Turkey). In all Finals since 1970 there have been 15 home sides in consolation matches and 11 have featured Over 2.5 Goals while eight have had four or more scores with just three of the 30 teams failing to net.
World Cup 3rd place playoff matches are often goal fests. All of the last nine matches have had Over 2.5 Goals while six have had Over 3.5 goals. Both teams usually score as well. The only team not to score in a World Cup consolation match since 1978 was in 1994 when Bulgaria were thrashed 4-0 by Sweden. Furthermore, six of the last eight editions have seen at least two goals before half-time.
With both teams expected to heavily rotate their teams for the squad it seems of little relevance to look at how either have done so far this tournament. Brazil have kept just one clean sheet in their six matches as four have had Over 2.5 Goals. The Netherlands scored 12 times in their opening four matches but then endured two consecutive goalless 120 minutes against Costa Rica and Argentina.
With little at stake here it would be wise to bet with caution but with such strong trends for lots of goals in these games it’s hard to ignore backing ‘overs’.