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2018 FIFA World Cup Group E Schedule and Game Predictions

Group E of the 2018 World Cup holds favorite Brazil which will face Switzerland in their first game; then, Costa Rica plays Serbia in the afternoon game. Keep reading for the predictions…

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World Cup 2018 Group E

Brazil vs. Switzerland

  • Date: Sunday, June 17
  • Betting Odds: Brazil -255 vs Switzerland +851 – Draw +396

Brazil: The Brazilians have a bone to pick with everyone after their debacle in World Cup 2014 that will forever haunt their memories. But, Brazil seems to have ousted whatever ghosts they had and are ready to prove why they’re the only five-time World Cup champions.

Brazil was the first team to qualify for Russia 2018, leaving behind a trail of victories that included a 3-0 win over Argentina, a 4-1 win against Uruguay, and a 1-0 win over Germany in a friendly match. Brazil’s comeback was sparked by “Tite’s” naming as head coach which led to 13 wins, three draws, and only one loss.  

Brazil had a scare after PSG superstar and former Barcelona phenom, Neymar Jr. suffered an injury during the last UEFA Champions League competition. Neymar has recovered, however, and is now ready to bring honor back to his country, “I don’t want to be the best player in the world, I want to win the World Cup,” he commented on YouTube channel Desimpedidos.

The South American squad is favorite to win the group and among the teams expected to win it all at a +400 moneyline. Brazil has enough talent to fill a stadium with players of the likes of Neymar, Firmino, Willian, Coutinho, Douglas Costa, Gabriel Jesus, and Paulinho so the only question for Coach Tite is to decide who he will send to the pitch.

Switzerland: The Swiss might have cringed at drawing against Brazil in their first game, but at least they’ll have the opportunity of sharpening their teeth with one of the best teams in the World Cup which will help them prepare for their next matches.

Switzerland qualified without much problems in a rather weak group that included Hungary, Latvia, Faroe Islands, and Andorra. But, they’ll need to pull out all the stops against Brazil and try to keep it together in what surely will be one of the toughest games of their group.

If Switzerland can hold up to Brazil’s attack for enough time, they might be able to capitalize on scoring opportunities. But for all intents and purposes, this will most likely be a defensive game for them. The fact that Switzerland’s two top scorers are defenders, however, might complicate matters for them somewhat.

Brazil vs. Switzerland Pick and Prediction: There’s a lot Brazil has to prove to themselves and to their fans. The entire country expects them to at least reach the final and anything else would be unacceptable. Expect this to be a close game in the first half, but Brazil will turn on the backburners in the second half and win 4-0.

Costa Rica vs. Serbia

  • Date: Sunday, June 17
  • Betting Odds: Serbia +104 vs Costa Rica +325 – Draw +235

Costa Rica: A small country with high expectations from their squad because of their Brazil 2014 performance, when they reached the quarterfinals. However, nobody will underestimate them this time around so it’ll be an uphill battle every step of the way.

The goal for the “Ticos” will be to at least make it to the knockout stage. From then on out, everything is a win. Much of the same squad that competed in Brazil 2014 is back for the current edition but with four years’ worth of experience under their belts.  

They’ll be counting on this experience to get them through this match against a complicated opponent that is considered the favorite to win the game.

Serbia: The European nation had some impressive wins during the qualifiers, beating tough competition that included Wales, Austria, and the Republic of Ireland. However, Serbia has not been able to go past the group stage in over 20 years so they may still have a long way to go.

The Serbian squad scored the most goals - 20 - in their group, with Aleksandar Mitrovic leading the way with six goals. Branislav Ivanovic (Zenit St Petersburg) is also an experienced player having sharpened his teeth at Chelsea and is the backbone of the defense.

Costa Rica vs. Serbia Pick and Prediction: Serbia has the upper hand considering the World Cup is being played in their backyard. Most of Serbia’s players are accustomed to playing in Europe as well and the likes of Aleksandar Kolarov, Nemanja Matic, Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, and Aleksandar Mitrovic are great. Costa Rica isn’t a pushover however and they tend to fare well in matches where they are the underdogs. The game will end 1-0 in favor of Costa Rica.