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Luiz Felipe Scolari believes Brazil’s friendly with South Africa could prove vital to his side’s chances of winning the World Cup on home soil in the summer.
Wednesday’s clash in Johannesburg marks one of the final times the Selecao will be together before they begin their preparations for the tournament for which they are the current 3.80 favourites to win.
Having won last year’s Confederations Cup, they know they have the ability to beat the best in the world but there are still a number of questions to be answered over how the squad will be made up, especially with them barely playing any competitive football over the last four years due to them being named the hosts.
The Bafana Bafana beat Spain in their last outing and despite being priced at 9.89 going into the game, they are sure to provide the Brazilians, who are 1.24 to win, a major test due to their frantic style, while the teams are currently 5.80 to draw.
Scolari previously guided his country to World Cup glory in 2002 and is under huge pressure to win a sixth world title in front of an expectant home nation.
The 65-year-old knows that at this stage every game counts and believes he will learn a lot from this week’s clash in Johannesburg.
“It’s a good opportunity to meet the group, our last before the final squad of the World Cup (is decided),” he said in a statement. “It will be an important test against an African team who recently beat Spain, and a good time to talk to the players and coaching staff on planning for the World Cup.”