#World Cup day 19: What to look out for

Philippe Coutinho has been the standout performer for Brazil so far and his passes will be an important part in Brazil’s tactics today.

Brazil's attacking midfielder Philippe Coutinho celebrates a goal during a match against Costa Rica in the 2018 Fifa World Cup. Picture: @FIFAWorldCup/Twitter.

JOHANNESBURG - Mexico take on Brazil at 4pm on Monday before Japan, who progressed due to a better disciplinary record, take on Belgium at 8pm.

Feature match: Brazil v Mexico

Brazil key players:

Philippe Coutinho (Midfielder)

Philippe Coutinho has been the standout performer for Brazil so far this World Cup. Having already scored two goals, Coutinho has been instrumental in Brazil progressing into the knockout stage. His playmaking in midfield has made a number of chances for Gabriel Jesus. His passes will be an important part in Brazil’s tactics, especially considering that he is averaging more than 70 passes per game.

Neymar (Winger)

Neymar has played every minute for Brazil so far with eight of his shots, so far, being on target. Neymar has been criticized for going down too easily and being too weak, however, he has earned 17 free-kicks so far. His quick feet may trouble the Mexican defence but he will have to be stronger if, referee, Gianluca Rocchi allows for a harder, faster game.

Mexico key players:

Hirving Lozano (Forward)

The 22-year old has been an important part of Mexico’s counter-attacking football. Having scored, almost, two identical counter-attacking goals against Germany and South Korea, Lozano and his attacking players showed how dangerous they can be when there is a turnover in possession. Lozano will be hoping to add to the tally of goals and assists against Brazil

Javier Hernandez (Striker)

The former Manchester United scored in his 50th goal for his national team in Mexico’s 2-1 win over South Korea. In the process. He went joint-top of Mexico's list of all-time leading World Cup marksmen alongside Luis Hernandez (Four goals). Given the manner in which Mexico counter-attack, if Brazil don’t take their chances, Hernandez will surely take his.

Ahmed Kajee’s prediction: Brazil 1-2 Mexico (AET)


Belgium go into the game against Japan as favourites following their 100% record in the group stages. Eden Hazard and co have been convincing in all their matches so far. If Michy Batshuayi can avoid hitting himself in the face, Belgium should progress. With the manner in which Japan progressed, they do not have a lot to prove. If they take the few chances that they will be afforded, an upset may be on the card.

Kajee's prediction: Belgium 3-0 Japan

Kick-off times (CAT):

Brazil v Mexico 16h00

Belgium v Japan 20h00