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Denmark - Brazil Preview: Selecao commence Olympic preparations with difficult test in Hamburg
Mano Menezes sends a depleted team to Germany to face a dangerous Denmark side who are hoping for a successful Euro 2012 campaign having missed out on the finals four years ago
By Daniel Edwards
Jacobson, Kjaer, Agger, Poulsen
Rommedahl, Eriksen, Krohn-Dehli
Danilo, T. Silva, David Luiz, Marcelo
Lucas Moura, Oscar
L. Damiao, Hulk
Denmark's Morten Olsen closed his squad for Euro 2012 with the inclusions of Nicklas Pedersen and Jores Okore, and the chosen 23 will first face the South American giants before hosting Australia in Copenhagen seven days later. Captain Daniel Agger missed the Danes' last match against Russia with a fractured rib, but the Liverpool man is back to full fitness and is expected to lead his side out in Hamburg on Saturday.
Brazil coach Mano Menezes has been plagued with injury doubts as he prepares for the London 2012 Olympics, as it was confirmed that Ganso would undergo minor knee surgery, which puts the Santos man out of the Selecao's warm-up matches. Dani Alves is another casualty and will be replaced on Saturday by Danilo, while Neymar's Libertadores commitments mean he misses the friendly, giving Hulk and Damiao the chance to start up front.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Denmark's last international game ended in a 2-0 home defeat at the hands of Russia.
- Euro 2012 will mark the Danes' sixth appearance in the continental tournament out of the last seven, having failed to qualify in 2008 for the first time in 24 years.
- Four players in the Danish Euro squad feature for French fairytale outfit Evian. Stephan Andersen, Daniel Wass, Thomas Kahlenberg and Christian Poulsen all helped the side to ninth place in Ligue 1 after two successive promotions.
- Coach Morten Olsen (right) has been at the helm since 2000, directing in his fourth major tournament.
- Brazil, meanwhile, have been coached by no less than six trainers since Olsen took over at Saturday's rivals. Mano Menezes is the sixth man to sit on the bench in the last 12 years.
- The Selecao squad, with a view to the Olympics, does not contain a single player aged 30 or over. Botafogo keeper Jefferson is the veteran of the group at 28 and with four caps.
- Similarly, only five players in the squad - Thiago Silva, David Luiz, Lucas, Alexandre Pato and Neymar - have represented their country 10 times or more.
- The Olympic Games has never been won by a Brazilian team; silver-medal finishes in 1984 (Los Angeles) and 1988 (Seoul) remain the best performances.
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Top 3 Predictions
Denmark 0-3 Brazil
- 13.86 %
Denmark 1-3 Brazil
- 12.28 %
Denmark 0-2 Brazil
- 12.19 %
|International Friendlies (FR)||May 26, 2012||Denmark 1 - Brazil 3|
|Mar 26, 2013||Denmark 1 - Bulgaria 1||WCQ|
|Mar 22, 2013||Czech Rep. 0 - Denmark 3||WCQ|
|Feb 6, 2013||Macedonia FYR 3 - Denmark 0||FR|
|Jan 31, 2013||Mexico 1 - Denmark 1||FR|
|Jan 26, 2013||Canada 0 - Denmark 4||FR|
|Returns:||Denmark £710.00||Sign up with William Hill for a free bet up to £25|
|Returns:||Draw £460.00||Sign up with William Hill for a free bet up to £25|
|Returns:||Brazil £19.10||Sign up with bet365 for a free bet up to £200|
|5||Simon Busk Poulsen||Defender|
The veteran reached 100 caps in February against Russia, and prepares for his third major championship between the posts for Denmark as he continues the nation's tradition of accomplished goalkeepers. Stopping the prolific Hulk and Damiao in their tracks would prove great practice for a successful Euro 2012 campaign.
For all the talent Brazil can boast in the final third of the pitch, goals have often been in short supply as the team's attack fails to click. Mano will bet on the physicality and composure of the imposing Porto man to try and break the jinx, as Hulk gets a more than deserved chance to start thanks to Neymar's absence.
Denmark's experienced defence are not accustomed to leaking goals cheaply, and it could prove too much for a Selecao team who are yet to convince since Mano Menezes took over after the 2010 World Cup. A low-key draw looks a good bet.
Times In GMT
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed