World Cup Semi Finals
Now we’re ending the last few rounds of the World Cup, the nail biting starts. Two European teams vs two South American teams. It’s a tale of two continents!
Brazil vs Germany
The first match of the World Cup Semi Finals will be Germany against Brazil. A nail-biter to be sure. It kicks off at 5pm (That’s 9pm to us Brits) at Estadio Mineirao at Belo Horizonte just 450km north of Rio de Janeiro. It’s a tough one for me. I have to decide who to support. As a European I have to support Germany. As someone who actually lives in Portugal I have to support Brazil because it’s a Portuguese speaking country. So I plan to stay neutral here.
World Cup Semi Final Case for BrazilOn home turf, Brazil certainly has the upper hand. It also has the upper hand in previous goals scored head-to-head, claiming 39 goals scored to Germany’s 24. Unfortunately, without top scorer Neymar and Captain Thiago Silva, they will have to prove that they don’t need these stars to win.
One weapon they still have is number 19, Chelsea’s Willan. He’s only scored 2 international goals so far but at 25 years old, he’s still a rising star. Maybe today’s match is the opportunity for him to shine brightly? A nice double would go down well.
Brazil also have 30 year old Fred, who has already scored 18 international goals, but only one in this tournament so far. Fred has something to prove here so looks bound to score some more goals. With 38 international caps, his experience is also useful. He needs to score goals – today!
World Cup Semi Final Case for GermanyGermany is the underdog in this World Cup Semi Final match. Any team that plays against the hosting nation is in an uphill battle. With just 4 wins to 12 when previously playing Brazil, it’s a game of odds for Germany. Their goal today has to be to improve their odds and improve their 1:3 win ratio.
If Germany play their usual game of closing down the opponent with military precision, their strategy machine may just win the day by preventing Brazil from scoring. The problem then will be opening themselves up to score a goal in the Brazilian net.
Germany are known for a tight game and Polish-born Miroslav Klose, who scored against Ghana in this tournament, may be the one to give Germany a chance. His past has been about survival against all odds, so this game must be his chance to once again show the world that he is a first-class survivor. He has already matched Ronaldo’s all-time record of 15 World Cup goals. It’s a case for the best to become even better.
Muller scored 3 goals against Brazil’s mother nation team, Portugal and also scored again against the United States. He’s just as likely to pull another out of the bag today for this World Cup Semi Final.
Brazil and Germany are historically two of the three top performing teams in the World Cup. Both have reached 7 World Cup finals with Brazil winning 5 of theirs. Germany won 3 of their own final matches too. But on home ground, the odds are still for Brazil in this World Cup Semi Final clash.
However, to throw a ball in the air, if you check out FIFA’s own World Rankings, you’ll spot that Germany is number two, one step ahead of Brazil (England is 10th). From these rankings, if all things were even, it would appear that all FIFA bets on this 2014 World Cup Semi Final would be on Germany.
Finally, I have to add that this match should have been the World Cup Final match for 2014 – a real clash of titans. Instead, we’re treated to it tonight at 9pm UK time. I expect the streets to be deserted while history is being made.