1. They’re Doing It For Neymar
The news that Neymar has been ruled out of the rest of the tournament with a broken bone in his back has been treated like a death in the family in Brazil.
Emotional news bulletins have carried the latest updates about the team’s inspiration in grave tones, and whilst some have used his injury to claim that the hosts no longer have a chance to win the tournament, Neymar’s absence could be seen as even greater motivation for his teammates.
2. The Crowd Are Carrying Them Through
The atmosphere at each and every Brazil game in this tournament has been remarkable, with stirring renditions of the national anthem sung by pumped-up players and supporters alike.
The crowd will do all they can to keep the vociferous nature of that atmosphere alive, and it’ll be tough for Brazil’s opponents to even hear themselves think, never mind play football.
3. David Luiz Is A Man Possessed
Sometimes David Luiz gets a look in his eyes and you’re not sure if he’s about to attack the ball or one of his opponents.
The newly-signed Paris Saint-Germain defender has been one of the symbols of his side’s challenge at this tournament, and will assume an even greater role in the semi-final against Germany following the injury to Neymar and suspension to Thiago Silva. It is a role he’ll relish.
4. They’re Getting The ‘Home’ Decisions
Ever since the opening game against Croatia and the rather favourable penalty awarded to Fred after he was breathed on by Dejan Lovren, Brazil have had the rub of the green when it comes to refereeing decisions.
Luiz Felipe Scolari even hit out at the officials following the win over Colombia after he believed that his players weren’t getting enough protection, something which led to the injury to Neymar, so will that pressure tell on Mexican referee Marco Rodriguez – the man who missed Luis Suarez’s bite – on Tuesday in Belo Horizonte?
5. They Haven’t Even Considered Not Winning It
Ever since the decision to award this World Cup to Brazil, the belief has been that the host nation simply has to win it.
They are not countenancing failure, something which the country experienced the last him they played host in 1950 when they lost to Uruguay in the final match, a defeat they still talk about today.
Brazil are 3.75 third favourites to win the World Cup – Bet now!