Mexico and Brazil meet on Wednesday for their second matches of the 2013 Confederations Cup. It should be an interesting match for two sides who could decide their fate in the tournament.
The second matches of most group stages are the most entertaining because they're the most important. Nobody has secured a bid to the next round, so everybody is looking to pick up three points. The first-match jitters are also out of the way.
All in all, this could be a very entertaining game should both teams deliver.
Here's a quick preview for this Confederations Cup match.
When: Wednesday, June 19, at 3 p.m. ET
Where: Estadio Castelao, Fortaleza, Brazil
Live Stream: ESPN3
What's at Stake
This is a pivotal match for both sides.
Brazil can qualify for the knockout stage with a win. They've already picked up three points, so another three would ensure that Brazil will finish at least second in Group A. The Selecao looked great against Japan, and Luiz Felipe Scolari will want to continue that run against Mexico.
This is the best Brazil has looked under Scolari, and this tournament could go a long way to getting the team ready for the 2014 World Cup.
Mexico just needs to win, period. They've won only once in six World Cup qualifying matches. El Tri looked very pedestrian in their 2-1 loss to Italy in their first match of the tournament.
A loss wouldn't condemn Mexico to elimination, but they would need a lot of things to go right in order to make it to the knockout stage.
Mexico have enough talent to have success at the World Cup. Right now, though, their players look unsure of themselves and disorganized on the pitch.
Brazil Player to Watch: Neymar
Neymar came into this tournament with massive expectations, and so far, he's delivered. His goal against Japan was a beautiful volley.
The 21-year-old striker has a lot to prove as he moves to Barcelona. He's got plenty of critics who think he's nothing more than a flashy Brazilian who will struggle to cope with more physically demanding European leagues.
Only time will tell if Neymar can fulfill his massive potential. For the time being, he looks pretty good. Few could have been disappointed with his performance against Japan.
Brazil don't have a world-class striker. Fred is good, but he's not a top-level forward. With Neymar's talent, he needs to be the engine for the attack.
Mexico Player to Watch: Jose de Jesus Corona
Javier Hernandez is the star for El Tri, but it's been Jose de Jesus Corona who's been the most consistent player.
On one hand, it's always good when you can count on your goalkeeper. On the other, it's never a good sign when your goalkeeper is consistently having the best performances on the team. It means you're having defensive breakdowns, an underwhelming attack or a combination of the two.
Unfortunately for Mexico, it's the third option.
Were it not for Corona's timely saves, El Tri probably would have conceded four or five goals against Italy. He kept Mexico in the game, and he'll likely have to do the same against Brazil.
Given El Tri's recent troubles, it's unlikely they'll score more than a goal. They'll need to keep the score low and hope to counter Brazil. If Corona continues his great run of form, Mexico have a chance.
Brazil will be the aggressors. They controlled the match against Japan, and they'll do the same against Mexico.
There's a chance that Mexico could wake up from whatever slumber they're in. They've got more than enough talent to win this match, it's a matter of actually playing up to their potential. El Tri haven't done anything recently to make you think they can get three points, though.
Neymar and Hulk up top will be more than enough to see off Mexico with a goal or two early.
The biggest thing will be finishing. Brazil will probably have ample opportunity to get on the board. Italy had a lot of blown chances and nearly only walked away with a point despite dominating the match.
The longer Brazil go without scoring, the more confident Mexico will become, and a confident Mexico is a dangerous thing for the Selecao.
Expect a match similar to El Tri's first against Italy. Brazil will be on the front foot for the majority but never pull away
Brazil 2, Mexico 0
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