Verdict: Away win
Best Odds: 4/5
Following the promising goalless draw against World Cup holders Germany, under-strength England face another stern test as they play host to star-studded Brazil, who eased off to a friendly win over Japan despite the fact that a number of key men were rested at Stade Pierre-Mauroy.
The national team bosses did well to arrange high-profile international friendlies against Germany and Brazil, hoping Gareth Southgate’s side will learn from games against two of the world’s strongest sides, but the fans feared the plans could backfire after a host of important players withdrew from the squad. The head coach was heavily criticised for handing call-ups to players like Jack Cork, Joe Gomez, Lewis Cook and Dominic Solanke, but the second-string side justified the selection as they battled bravely to earn a 0-0 draw against Germany. Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Jordan Pickford were especially impressive on the night and they will be hoping to face Brazil as well. Gareth Southgate will be able to field a stronger side in Tuesday’s game as the likes of Marcus Rashford, Kyle Walker and Gary Cahill should be recalled after they were rested against Germany. Having failed to impress in the qualifiers, England could really use another morale-boosting result against a top side, and it is clear they will not be lacking motivation when facing Tite’s men. However, given the strength of the opposition and their current form, we would be really surprised if the Three Lions extend their unbeaten run to six games.
Dominic Solanke, Lewis Cook and Angus Gunn were drafted from the Under-21 side, while Jack Butland and Phil Jones miss out through injury.
Following the difficult period under Carlos Dunga, Brazil have really flourished since Tite took over the reigns and they are back to being one of the best and most exciting sides in international football. While most other top South American clubs experienced all sorts of problems, the Selecao eased off to a World Cup qualifying berth, taking 41 points from 18 games to finish 10 points clear of second-placed Uruguay. This is the reason why many see Brazil as one of the main candidates for the 2018 World Cup trophy, and next summer will seem as a perfect time to end a 16-year wait for their sixth World Cup title. Tite decided to rest most first team regulars in Friday’s friendly against Japan, but his second string side did a very good job, recording a 3-1 triumph, The head coach is now expected to field his strongest line-up against severely weakened England side, so we have reason to believe the Selecao will continue the rich vein of form at Wembley. Brazil have now won 25 of last 26 international friendlies, losing only to arch rivals Argentina in June this year.
The likes of Dani Alves, Philippe Coutinho, Roberto Firmino, Paulinho and Renato Augusto should all start, while former Juventus playmaker Diego is in contention to win his second cap since 2008.
Key Factors to Consider
- England missing a host of first team players
- Brazil will be at full strength
- The Selecao won 25 of last 26 international friendlies
- England have two wins in fourteen meetings with Brazil (D6 L6)
- Both teams scored in five of their last six meetings
Even if England showed some promise against Germany, we cannot see Gareth Southgate’s second string side surprise full-strength Brazil. The Selecao have been on top of their game for quite a while and we see great value in backing them to win at Wembley.
Verdict: Away win
Best Odds: 4/5
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