Brazil vs Costa Rica
Venue: Krestovsky Stadium
Kick off: 1pm
Neymar will start for Brazil as they look to put their 1-1 draw with Switzerland behind them when they face Costa Rica in Group E this afternoon.
The PSG star, who broke a toe four months ago, limped out of training during the week with an ankle injury but is expected to retain his place for Friday’s game in St Petersburg.
Speaking at his pre-match press conference, Brazil boss Tite said: “He had a knock, but I think it was the first time in three-and-a-half months he played 90 minutes.
“We are calm. Five matches is the minimum you need to be fully fit and he has already sped up the process.”
Neymar might be fit but Costa Rica coach Oscar Ramirez admitted the world’s most expensive player will be closely tracked, saying: “Maybe we will mark him with two men, we will see.”
Brazil’s 1-1 draw against Switzerland has heaped the pressure on the five-time holders to secure all three points against Costa Rica, who fell to a narrow 1-0 defeat to Serbia.
Costa Rica boss Ramirez has also had to play down claims there are divisions in his squad.
“It is true that some players are closer to other players but there are not different groups, there are no problems at all within the team,” he said.
“I haven’t had to intervene at all. There were no clashes. If clashes really happened then I haven’t seen anything and I can’t believe anything has happened because they are all very polite and very calm people. So I don’t think this is true.”