For the most entertaining match of round one we may have to wait until the final day, when the attacking and unusually-formulated Serbia will take the game to tournament favourites Brazil.

It is even possible, given the tactical differences between Tite and Dragan Stojkovic, that Serbia will win the possession battle, if not the game.

Serbia line up in a confrontational 3-5-2 formation in which Dusan Tadic plays as one of the free eights alongside Sergej Milinkovic-Savic.

If that wasn’t bold enough, Stojkovic deploys Inter Milan winger Filip Kostic and highly-rated wide forward Andrija Zivkovic as wing-backs; Serbia will go down swinging against Brazil, safe in the knowledge that defeat here does not likely threaten their place in the second round.

It should give us goals. Kostic and Zivkovic should be able to find space up against the weakest area of the Brazil team – full-back pair Dani Alves and Alex Telles – and yet Brazil’s depth of talent in attack probably makes the Serbian approach suicidal. Vinicius Junior and Raphinha have taken the pressure off Neymar to create a calmer and more deadly forward line.

Serbia, who in the last year have conceded three against Denmark and two against Slovenia, don’t have the defenders to cope with that.

Source: Alex Keble


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