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World Cup Group E analysis

World Cup Group E analysis: Who will be joining Brazil in the round of 16?

May 16, 2018 By Ali M.
The Selecao is almost guaranteed to make it out of their group, with Costa Rica, Serbia, and Switzerland set to fight for a spot in the knockout stage.

Group E will see the competition's most successful side, Brazil, clash with three promising sides. While this is anything but a Group of Death, these match-ups should offer fans a few memorable moments. Here is everything you need to know. 

Who's in this group?


Star man: After suffering an injury scare back in February, Neymar should be fit in time to lead Brazil at the World Cup. The PSG star joins Gabriel Jesus and Philippe Coutinho to form the Selecao's deadly attacking trio, but it will be the former Barcelona ace to light up the stage.

Neymar, Brazil, FIFA World Cup

Coach: Since taking over from Dunga after their disappointing Copa America Centenario, Tite has built a formidable side. Brazil, under his guidance, became the first nation to qualify for the World Cup besides the host after tearing up CONMEBOL. The five-time champion is now tipped to add a sixth title to their cabinet.

Prior World Cup appearances: 20 (1930, 1934, 1938, 1950, 1954, 1958, 1962, 1966, 1970, 1974, 1978, 1982, 1986, 1990, 1994, 1998, 2002, 2006, 2010, 2014)

Best finish: 5x champion (1958, 1962, 1970, 1994, 2002)

Costa Rica

Star man: While Bryan Ruiz will be the go-to guy for goals, Keylor Navas will be the key man on the other end of the pitch. The Real Madrid goalkeeper put in impressive displays at the 2014 edition to beat England and Italy to the knockout stage and will be hoping to enjoy similar or greater success in Russia.

Coach: Oscar Ramirez is the man leading Costa Rica at the upcoming World Cup. Under his reign, they booked their ticket to Russia with little complications. A tougher task now awaits them in the group stage.

Prior World Cup appearances: 4 (1990, 2004, 2006, 2014)

Best finish: Quarter-final (2014)


Star man: Serbia has a number of promising attackers and strong defenders, but Nemanja Matic is a unique player who could prove pivotal for their World Cup campaign. The Man United ace has shown he can boss the midfield in the Premier League and will be hoping to do so in Group E.

Coach: Mladen Krstajić is the man at the helm of a side that dominated their qualifying group, but he was not the one to guide them to Russia. That man was the previous tactician, Slavoljub Muslin, who was dismissed after a fallout with the FA. Krstajić, despite his inexperience, will be keen on a standout campaign.

Prior World Cup appearances: One as Serbia and Montenegro (2006) and once as Serbia (2010)

Best finish: Group stage


Star man: Xherdan Shaqiri's team might have been relegated in the Premier League, but the Swiss ace impressed in the English top-flight in 2017/18. He scored a number of crucial goals and has been a crucial part of the national side.

Coach: Under Vladimir Petković, La Nati was performing extremely well in the qualifiers and look destined for an automatic qualification. They eventually missed out on a straight ticket to Russia to Portugal but made the 2018 edition regardless via the playoffs.

Prior World Cup appearances: 10 (1934, 1938, 1950, 1954, 1962, 1966, 1994, 2006, 2010, 2014)

Best finish: Quarter-final (1943, 1938, 1954)

Who is favorite to top this group?

Brazil, of course. The only question is who will be joining the Selecao in the round of 16. Costa Rica, Serbia, and Switzerland all have a fair shot at a second-spot finish. Only time will tell who will make it out of the group.

Group E Fixtures

Sunday, 17 June 2018
+8:00am Group E
4:00pm local (Samara)
Samara Arena
Costa Rica National TeamCosta Rica 0 - 1 SerbiaCosta Rica National Team
+2:00pm Group E
9:00pm local (Rostov-on-Don)
Rostov Arena
Brazil National TeamBrazil 1 - 1 SwitzerlandBrazil National Team
Friday, 22 June 2018
+8:00am Group E
3:00pm local (Saint Petersburg)
Saint-Petersburg Stadium
Brazil National TeamBrazil 2 - 0 Costa RicaBrazil National Team
+2:00pm Group E
8:00pm local (Kaliningrad)
Kaliningrad Stadium
Serbia National TeamSerbia 1 - 2 SwitzerlandSerbia National Team
Wednesday, 27 June 2018
+2:00pm Group E
9:00pm local (Moscow)
Otkrytiye Arena
Serbia National TeamSerbia 0 - 2 BrazilSerbia National Team
+2:00pm Group E
9:00pm local (Nizhny Novgorod)
Stadion Nizhny Novgorod
Switzerland National TeamSwitzerland 2 - 2 Costa RicaSwitzerland National Team



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