Questioned by reporters before his side’s World Cup last 16 tie with South Korea in Qatar, Brazil centre-back Thiago Silva said that he holds much respect for the Korean team and stressed that the game will be a tricky one. The 38-year-old defender explained:
“This game is very difficult. We know the quality of South Korea, they’re a team who like to play on the front foot and like to have the ball. We have to minimize their momentum to qualify and we’ll have to work hard for it. The last game against them [a 5-1 friendly win for Brazil in June] has nothing to do with a round of 16 game at a World Cup. It’s a very difficult game and all I can say is that we’ll be prepared… Today, we’re physically fit to face this tough game with Korea, we can’t think it will be easy… they went through a super difficult group and what we should do is respect the opponent and play a great game.”
Brazil won their first two games against Serbia and Switzerland but, having qualified for the last 16, a much-rotated side were beaten late on by Cameroon in their final group game before this first knockout tie with South Korea in Doha.