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Brazil and Mexico battle on Monday at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia with a spot in the quarterfinals on the line. The two teams square off at Samara Arena with the right to take on either Belgium or Japan in the semifianls. This round of 16 clash wasn’t what we expected for El Tri, as it appeared as if the North American side would win Group F and end up playing the Group E runner-up Switzerland. However/ a 3-0 defeat to Sweden in the third group stage match nearly knocked Mexico out of the tournament if it had not been for South Korea’s massive upset over reigning 2014 champs Germany. As a result/ Mexico wound up in second and now has the tough task of eliminating one of the favorites to win this tournament.
We’ll likely see Mexico try a similar game plan it employed against Germany. El Tri knocked off the reigning champs 1-0 in the opening match of the group stage by defending with everything and trying to go on the counter to create chances. As for Brazil, the team has been sharp when it comes to creating opportunities. The five goals the team has in three matches could have been more had it not been for the poor finishing. But if Neymar and company start clicking, there may be no better suited team to win the Cup.
When it comes to injury reports, Brazil is expected to be without left back Marcelo after he picked up a back injury in the final group stage match against Serbia. Filipe Luis will start in his place. Douglas Costa will miss his second consecutive match due to muscle tightness. Danilo has recovered from a thigh injury, but stay on the bench in favor of Fagner at right back. No big changes are expected for Mexico, though Hector Moreno will serve a one-game yellow card suspension. Other than that, the only change to look out for is Javier Hernandez’s hair. Here’s how you can watch the match and more. And be sure to return a half an hour before kickoff for our live blog of the game: