Next up is Group E, and this is surely all about the boys from Brazil.
The world looked on agog four years ago as Brazil, the hosts and favourites, collapsed in tears in the semifinal, losing 7-1 to Germany.
However, the appointment of a new coach, Adenor Bacchi, more commonly known at Tite, in September 2016, has transformed the side. They were the first team to qualify for this tournament, and under his tutelage there have been 13 wins and only one loss (in a friendly to Argentina) in 17 games.
Where in 2014 the loss of star player Neymar resulted in capitulation, now the team has functioned well without him as he has just returned from another injury.
It’s difficult to see the other members of this group – Switzerland, Costa Rica and Serbia – having enough to deprive the Brazilians of top spot in the group. From there a march to the semifinals looks likely, and a likely encounter with France.
We think Brazil will have too much for this half of the draw, particularly with the nightmare of four years ago driving them on, and we expect them to make the final.
Given that we also expect Germany to progress (see here for that bet suggestion), we recommend the 12/1 on offer for a Brazil/Germany final, and a chance for Brazilian redemption.
Recommendation: Brazil to face Germany in the final, 1 pt, at 12/1, bet375
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