B/R Experts' World Cup Predictions: Can Brazil Overcome Neymar's Injury Absence?

Ian Rodgers@irodgers66World Football Staff WriterJuly 8, 2014

B/R Experts' World Cup Predictions: Can Brazil Overcome Neymar's Injury Absence?

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    Bleacher Report's experts were keen not to rest on the laurels of their efforts of last season, so they will go into battle for the whole of the World Cup.

    Each game will feature a score prediction, combined with a Man of the Match selection (based on FIFA's official decision).

    The predictions for the Brazil vs. Germany semi-final are in the following slide, and you will be able to chart their success—or lack thereof—for the rest of the tournament on our daily scoreboard.

    Post your own picks on Twitter and include @br_uk. Anyone who gets all scorelines and the Man of the Match awards correct will receive a Bleacher Report goody bag.

Brazil vs. Germany

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    Sam Tighe: Brazil 0-2 Germany

    Without Neymar, Brazil will struggle to string anything together offensively, and there's no telling what the loss of Thiago Silva could do to the defence. Germany will execute a solid victory and progress to the final.

    Man of the Match: Thomas Mueller

    Mueller's due a goal, and he played fairly well during the 1-0 win over France. He could start up front again if Miroslav Klose's legs can't hack it.


    Michael Cummings: Brazil 0-1 Germany

    Just a few days ago, I was writing off the Germans against France. Now I'm backing them for the final. Go figure. All things equal, I'd probably pick the hosts. But with Neymar and Thiago Silva missing out, Germany might just have enough to overcome Brazil's home-field advantage and make it to the final.

    Man of the Match: Manuel Neuer

    Even with Neymar out, Brazil will have their chances. Neuer's sweeper-keeper heroics have been vital for Germany at times in the knockout stage, and it's likely he'll be called upon at a crucial point during the Brazil match.


    Alex Dimond: Brazil 1-0 Germany

    Brazil are without Thiago Silva and Neymar, but they have the home crowd on their side and surely will not falter within reach of the final. Germany looked comfortable in their quarter-final win, but they were helped both by an early goal and France's feeble attempts to get back into the contest. Brazil will not be so accommodating, so if they start well, they should have enough to see them through.

    Man of the Match: Oscar

    While Neymar has been the golden boy of Brazilian football ever since his emergence, it has often actually been Oscar who has knitted the national team together in recent years. With his more famous team-mates sidelined, perhaps this is the Chelsea playmaker's game to shine.


    Will Tidey: Brazil 2-1 Germany

    The sensible answer is Germany, of course it is. They're stronger, they have better cohesion, and they won't be missing the game-changing genius on whom they rely—because they don't really have one.

    That said, Brazil will be riding a wave of emotion, and 11 players will desperately want this for Neymar and Thiago Silva. Somehow, they'll get it done. My only explanation is passion and the possibility of a slow German back line getting caught twice.

    Man of the Match: Oscar

    Expect the Chelsea man to deliver a defining performance for Brazil in the absence of Neymar.


    Karl Matchett: Brazil 1-0 Germany

    Everything looks to be going against Brazil; they haven’t played well, they’ve lost Neymar to injury, and Thiago Silva is out. This is when the Hollywood story has to kick into gear for them, if it’s going to happen at all. Germany have impressed at times but have been strangely lethargic at others. The occasion, the home-backing and the expectation will all combine to send Brazil through.

    Man of the Match: Oscar

    With no Neymar, someone has to step up and show a real creative side to their game. Oscar has to be used better by his team-mates.

Updated Standings

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    B/R Expert Picks

    (One point for correct result, three points for correct scoreline, two points for correct Man of the Match.)

    Sam Tighe89
    Michael Cummings80
    Will Tidey78
    Karl Matchett68
    Alex Dimond63