Brazil v Colombia: Neymar And Rodriguez Meet In Fortaleza

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  • South American neighbours Brazil and Colombia face up to each other in the quarter-finals of the 2014 World Cup this Friday night, with their #10 players Neymar and James Rodriguez both looking to take away bragging rights as they meet in Fortaleza.

    Neymar has entered the 2014 World Cup as the main poster boy for the host nation, and it was only apt that Brazil's number 10 scored their first goal of the tournament on the occasion of his 50th cap for Brazil as he netted twice during the 3-1 victory against Croatia to put the Brazilian party in full flow.

    The 22-year-old also showed his dribbling techniques against Cameroon and displayed the skill that attracted Barcelona to the Brazilian forward, scoring another brace on that occasion to sit on four goals after four matches. Neymar has in fact completed the second most successful dribbles in the tournament, with only Argentina's Lionel Messi having completed more.

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    Knee and thigh injuries have occasionally reared up during the tournament for Neymar however, particularly against Chile where the Brazilian calmly converted the winning penalty in the side's second round shoot-out.

    Neymar enters Friday night's quarter-final match against Colombia 4/1 to score first with Betfair, and also lies 4/1 with William Hill to be the World Cup's top scorer of the tournament.

    Brazil's quarter-final opponents on Friday will be Colombia, who also have an in-form number 10 player in James Rodriguez who currently tops the Golden Boot standings with five goals in four games.

    The 22-year-old lies one goal ahead of the trio of Neymar, 2010 Golden Boot winner Thomas Muller and Barcelona superstar, Lionel Messi, who all lie on four goals and are still in the tournament with their respective countries.

    According to statistics from Opta, Rodriguez has scored with 62.5% of his efforts on goal during the World Cup so far - over 20% more than his nearest rival in that category.

    Rodriguez has been eyed up by the likes of Premier League giants Manchester United and Arsenal most recently, but shunned a move to the English league which he feels is "a bit too physical" for him.

    Rodriguez has taken over the mantle as Colombia's most dangerous player in the absence of injured AS Monaco team-mate, Radamel Falcao, and his technique shown during the tournament has been exquisite at times. His opening goal against Uruguay during Colombia's 2-0 second round victory was arguably a contender for goal of the World Cup, controlling on his chest before turning and volleying off the bottom of the crossbar to open the scoring.

    The Colombian midfielder currently sits 9/1 with Betfair to score first against Brazil on Friday in Fortaleza, and is now 10/3 with BetVictor to take the Golden Boot for top overall goalscorer.

    Brazil take on Colombia at 9pm on Friday 4 July, the match shown live on ITV. You can also compare all the odds for the 2014 World Cup right here.

    Brazil v Colombia

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