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Friday, July 2, 2010

Brazil-Holland clash promises to be an explosive encounter

PORT ELIZABETH: Brazil, without suspended Ramires and injured Elano, face Holland here today for the fourth time at a World Cup in what promises to be an explosive quarter-final.

In 1994 Brazil overcame the Dutch 3-2 at the same stage of the competition before going on to win the title. Four years later in France the Oranje lost out again, 4-2 on penalties after drawing their semi-final 1-1.
They first met in 1974, with the European side prevailing 2-0.

Holland are in arguably better shape than they have ever been to exact revenge on their arch enemies at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium and extend their unbeaten record in South Africa to five games.

Bert van Marwijk’s men are seeking to be crowned champions at the ninth attempt, after falling at the final hurdle twice – in 1974 and 1978.

Kaka (left) getting ready to flick Julio Baptista’s ear during Brazil’s training session. Brazil face Holland in the quarterfinals Friday. — Reuters
Van Marwijk, appointed after Euro 2008 when Holland excelled in the “Group of Death” only to run out of steam against Russia, has claimed his team are the “underdogs”.
“Brazil are a very mature and stable team. - thestar

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