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Three reasons to back Colombia to break Brazilian hearts

| 29.06.2014

Brazil and Colombia both booked places in the World Cup quarter-finals but in very contrasting ways. Colombia, thanks to the wizardry of James Rodriguez, breezed past Uruguay while Brazil needed penalties to stutter over Chile.

The pair will now meet in the World Cup’s last eight, with Ladbrokes pricing the hosts up as 4/5 favourites to win in 90 minutes. Colombia are 7/2 to complete a victory that would silence a nation, while the draw is 13/5.

Here’s three reasons why punters should be siding with the outsiders come quarter-final time:

Neymar is a doubt

For a 22-year-old, the Barcelona star is coping awfully well with the heavy weight of expectation Brazil are placing on him.

Having scored four goals in the tournament to this point, as well as slotting the deciding penalty to beat Chile, Luiz Felipe Scolari relies heavily on Neymar to win games.

He may not be on the pitch to face Colombia though, having been handled extremely roughly by a Chilean side who came so close to dumping the hosts out prematurely.

Should he not recover from all the bumps and bruises the round of 16 gave him, Neymar’s absence would be a huge bonus for Colombia.

Brazil are not finding life easy

Perhaps it’s the weight of expectation, or the fact they’re a more workmanlike side than tradition would like them to be. But Brazil are far from being the most impressive side at this tournament.

A group-stage win over Croatia, made possible by some questionable refereeing decisions, set the tone for what has been a less than convincing tournament so far, a tournament that’s seen them draw with both Mexico and Chile along the way.

At the other end of the spectrum, Colombia are playing with an attacking freedom and have their own in-form match winner in Rodriguez

Colombia rarely beat their South American rivals

In their history, Los Cafeteros have only ever won two games against Brazil in 25 meetings. What better time to record the most famous victory of all than in a World Cup that their opponent’s are hosting?

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.