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Brazil vs Belgium: Tite happy with ‘below-par’ Neymar

07 July 2018

The players remain trapped despite being reached this week by cave-diving rescuers, who released footage of them looking emaciated but calm, some wearing football shirts.

"They did it. You saw incredible heart from this team", BBC Sport quotes Martinez as saying.

Their harrowing ordeal coincides with the World Cup in Russian Federation and it has not escaped the attention of players. But I can tell you that we're going to look them in the eyes.

"We have been preparing for months, for weeks to play matches like that", said France coach Didier Deschamps.

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Belgium, who came from behind to beat Japan in a thrilling last-16 match, have fast become the favourite team of many fans of countries already eliminated for their attractive style of flowing football, a role their old rivals the Netherlands often occupied.

Both player and manager will hope that the football does the talking on Saturday evening, as Brazil face Belgium in a game to take them to the last 4 in Russian Federation and set up a game against France.

"If, as we all hope, they are reunited with their families in the coming days and their health allows them to travel, FIFA would be delighted to invite them to attend the 2018 World Cup final as our guests", he wrote in a letter to the head of the Football Association of Thailand.

Though Brazil has yet to hit the heights on the attacking front, it and Uruguay have been the meanest defences in the competition, conceding just one goal apiece in four matches.

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"Stay strong and know we are with you", Klopp said in a video message sent to CNN.

He added: "From what I have seen, Brazil are compact everywhere". We have to work hard and give our best in every game if we want to win the title. We have improved constantly since the start of the competition.

"He is a very humble player and I like being with him on a daily basis at club level".

Manchester City stalwart Kompany, 32, said although Belgium boast their own outstanding individual players such as Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne, the only way they will beat Brazil is to play as a team.

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Belgium were on the brink of another major tournament failure when trailing 2-0 with 21 minutes to play, only for a magnificent breakway goal by Nacer Chadli in the fourth minute of injury-time to cap a stunning fightback.

Brazil vs Belgium: Tite happy with ‘below-par’ Neymar