While they aren’t an overwhelming favorite, Brazil will be given the edge in their Olympic matchup against Mexico in the gold-medal game.
Despite their rich soccer history, Brazil has never won a gold medal in the Olympic Games, settling for silver in 1996 and bronze in 2008.
With Brazil looking to end their gold-less streak, a humble and underrated Mexico squad will be looking to upset Brazil and take home the coveted medal.
Either way, this game is going provide some fireworks, considering both teams scored at least three goals in their quarterfinal and semifinal matchups.
This matchup will certainly have its breathtaking moments along with fundamental play, so let’s take a closer look at the gold-medal matchup.
Where: Wembley Stadium, London, England
When: Saturday, August 11, 10 a.m. EDT
Live Stream: NBC Olympics
Brazil Team Breakdown
Football is obviously a team sport, but if there’s one player that can take over a game, it’s Neymar.
Standing at barely 20 years old, the dazzling forward has proven that he’s no fluke throughout this tournament.
So far, the 2011 South American Footballer of the Year has scored three goals and looked nimble, but scintillating with the ball.
Even though Neymar has been receiving the looks of the best European clubs, Leandro Damiao has earned most of the attention for the Brazilian team, and rightfully so.
On the tournament, the 23-year-old has led all scorers with six goals, including a two-goal dominating performance against South Korea in the semis.
If Neymar and Damiao are clicking and the Brazilian back four hold up, it’ll be tough for Mexico to bring home the gold.
Mexico Team Breakdown
Just as the Brazilian team’s strength is their offense, Mexico’s hopes of winning will be relying on the same.
While Giovani dos Santos is the big name on the roster, Oribe Peralta has played on point, especially of late.
Against Japan in the semifinals, Mexico was tied at halftime, but came out firing on all cylinders with the help of Peralta.
In the 65th minute, Peralta won the ball from a Japan defender and struck a long-range, swerving shot into the back of the net, making the game 2-1.
Peralta helped polish off the game with an assist to Javier Cortes deep in added time.
One thing to keep note of though is Mexico and Brazil’s performances against their one mutual opponent this tournament.
While Brazil defeated Korea 3-0 to reach the finals, Mexico struggled against them, settling for a nil to nil tie in group play.
Even though Mexico has gained more momentum, things like that still have to worrisome to Mexican supporters.
Prediction: 3-1 Brazil
Even though I think that Mexico will come out strong and maybe even score the first goal, Brazil is going to pull away with this one.
Not only will Damiao and Neymar be on their game, but I also expect a fantastic showing from Oscar, the recently signed Chelsea man.
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