Brazil v Germany is a fixture befitting of any World Cup final let alone semi. But rather than offering up the standard preview fare, we’re shining the pre-showdown spotlight on the men calling the shots.
In the yellow corner we have Luiz Felipe Scolari whose Brazil side are 7/4 for the 90-minute win, while in the white corner Joachim Loew’s Die Mannschaft are 19/10 to end the Selecao’s dream within the distance.
Here’s how we score the inter-coach clash in our News.Ladbrokes Top Trumps style-y….
Luiz Felipe Scolari: Age 65, Games in charge 51 (in two spells)
Tactical nous: Big Phil 8 / Loew 9
Brazil’s boss has stuck rigidly to his 4-3-3 formation at the tournament. But without Neymar to call upon the rumours are he will not be tempted into moving Oscar inside as a playmaker, rather preferring to play Paulinho, Fernandinho and Gustavo in a flair-less three.
This seems particularly strange with Oscar’s Chelsea teammate Willian screaming out as a direct replacement on the right.
Meanwhile, Loew showed his adaptability by relocating Philipp Lahm to right-back against France in a game where Germany were never in serious trouble. Loew is well-known for his meticulous pre-match planning also.
Tournament success: Big Phil 10 / Loew 8
With a 2002 World Cup winners’, 2013 Confederations Cup and a 2004 Euros runner-up medal on his mantle piece, the Brazilian is the clear winner here, as thus far second place at Euro 2008 is Loew’s greatest achievement as Germany boss.
Appearance/Dress sense: Big Phil 5 / Loew 9
Considering Scolari has Italian citizenship it’s a mystery why he chooses to adorn himself in a tracksuit 100 per cent of the time whilst his all-year-round Movember effort is also highly questionable. In stark contrast Loew is one of the sharpest dressers in management circles.
Joachim Loew: Age 54, Games in charge 110
Media handling: Big Phil 5 / Loew 8
Ok, the pressure Big Phil is under to win at home is likely to equal that of deep-sea depths.
However, after the Chile game telling anyone (journalists/fans/whoever else) they could “go to hell” if they don’t like his tactics is a little spiky by anyone’s standards. Loew remained cool as a cucumber in Germany back in 2006 and appears equally unflappable in Brazil.
Style of football: Big Phil 6 / Loew 8
Germany, thus far at least, are not quite the swashbuckling attacking unit which swept through England in South Africa like a hurricane through a shanty town. Nevertheless, they have still shown more fluidity and creativity than arguably the stodgiest Selecao side ever assembled.
Totals: Big Phil 34/50 – Loew 44/50
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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