02-Dec-2017 10:30:09 | The Guardian
Brazil have recovered from their 7-1 shame in 2014, while Germany maintain their winners’ aura and Russia have to show they can lay on a world-class party
It should not come as any surprise for Brazil and Germany to be earmarked as favourites for the World Cup in Russia. After all, they are the two most decorated countries in the tournament’s history (not forgetting absent friends Italy, who, like Germany, have four gold stars embroidered over their crest, one behind Brazil’s five).
But when you add some context, some nuance, it reveals something about sport’s capacity to drag the badly defeated back up from the floor that most bookmakers are not willing to separate two heavyweights who flabbergasted the planet with the scale of a 7-1 scoreline last time out.
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