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Semi-final: Brazil vs Germany

Venue: Estadio Mineirao, Belo Horizonte

Kick-off: 9pm (5pm, Brazil time)

TV coverage: ITV1, from 8:30pm

Referee: Marco Rodriguez (Mexico)


Luiz Felipe Scolari (Brazil)
Joachim Low (Germany)

Team news: Luiz Felipe Scolari has several options to replace injured star man Neymar.

Paulinho or Fernandinho could be asked to play a more advanced role now that regular midfielder Luis Gustavo is back from suspension.

But the two biggest contenders to fill Neymar's position are Chelsea forward Willian or Shakhtar Donetsk's Bernard.

Neither player has started a match for Brazil during the World Cup, but Willian has come off the bench in all but one of the team's matches.

Bernard, a tricky, diminutive 21-year-old, has made two substitute appearances during the tournament.

Brazil captain Thiago Silva will also miss out due to suspention and will be replaced by Dante with David Luiz taking the captain's armband.

Germany coach Joachim Low has no such selection problems with only Shkodran Mustafi unavailable, yet he still does not seem to have found his first-choice starting XI.

Philipp Lahm moved back to right-back in the quarter-final against France with Miroslav Klose making his first start up front, where Thomas Muller had previously been first choice.

Mesut Ozil has struggled to deliver while Lukas Podolski no longer seems to figure in Low's plans.

Key clash: Oscar (Brazil) v Bastian Schweinsteiger (Germany)

With Neymar injured Oscar will revert to his preferred No 10 role and he will be looking to constantly put pressure on Schweinsteiger who, despite being one of the world’s best midfielders, will have his questionable fitness tested by the Brazilian.

One to watch: Marcelo (Brazil)

The Real Madrid left-back has enjoyed a good tournament for the Selecao, but that could come to a crashing halt against Philipp Lahm. Germany's Mr Versatile, Lahm has been deployed as a holding midfielder and at right-back during the tournament, though Joachim Low is expected to opt for the latter in a bid to stop Marcelo's rampaging runs down that side.

Head-to-head record: Played 21 Brazil Wins 12 Draws 5 Germany Wins 4

Opta stats:

  • Brazil have reached the semi-finals of the World Cup for the first time since 2002, a year that they went on to lift the trophy.
  • The Seleção have lost none of their last six semi-final matches, winning five and drawing the other.
  • As such, Brazil have advanced through to the final in each of their last six appearances in the final four; needing penalties just once (versus Holland in 1998).
  • Germany are the first country to reach the semi-finals of the World Cup in four consecutive tournaments.
  • However, they have reached the final just once (2002) in their previous three appearances at this stage.
  • This will be only the second meeting between these two nations at the World Cup.
  • The first clash came in the 2002 final when Brazil won 2-0; with Ronaldo scoring both goals.
  • Since that 2002 final the two teams have met three times in all competitions, including in the 2005 Confederations Cup. They have won one match each with the other ending in a draw.
  • Their last meeting came in August 2011. Goals from Bastian Schweinsteiger, Andre Schurrle and Mario Gotze helped Germany to a 3-2 win. Neymar and Robinho netted for Brazil.
  • Brazil have scored in each of their last 10 clashes with Germany, averaging 2.2 goals per game.
  • Neymar has scored four goals and assisted another in the 2014 World Cup; but will miss the rest of the tournament through injury.
  • The Barcelona forward has played a hand in 50% of Brazil’s 10 goals so far in the tournament.
  • Brazil’s captain Thiago Silva will miss the semi-final through suspension. Brazil have lost none of their last 10 matches that he has featured in (W8 D2).
  • Silva’s replacement in the Brazil team is likely to be Bayern Munich defender Dante. The defender has played 151 times in the German Bundesliga for FC Bayern and Borussia Monchengladbach.
  • Dante is one of four players (two of which are goalkeepers) in the Brazil squad yet to play a minute at the 2014 World Cup.
  • No side have kept more clean sheets in the 2014 World Cup than Germany (3), while Brazil have only kept one in their five matches.
  • Brazil have won just one of their last four World Cup matches against UEFA opposition. That victory came in the Group Stages of this tournament against Croatia (D1 L2).
  • Germany’s only defeat in their last nine matches against South American opposition at the World Cup came in the 2002 final versus Brazil. They have won six and drawn two of the other eight.
  • Germany’s last six goals in the competition have been netted by six different players.
  • Only Thomas Muller (4) has scored more goals for Germany in this competition than centre-back Mats Hummels (2).
  • Both teams had to rely on goals from centre-halves to win their quarter-final match (Thiago Silva, David Luiz and Mats Hummels).
  • Against Colombia, Brazil conceded 31 fouls; more than the Seleção have conceded in any single World Cup game from 1966 onwards.
  • Miroslav Klose needs one goal to be the World Cup’s all-time leading scorer. He is currently joint-top with Ronaldo (15 goals).
  • The Lazio forward is the only player from either squad that was part of the 2002 final.

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