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Brazil vs Costa Rica predictions: Goals to flow in California
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Henry Hardwicke
Alisson could struggle to keep a clean sheet for Brazil against Costa Rica
Alisson could struggle to keep a clean sheet for Brazil against Costa Rica

- Brazil are nine-time Copa America champions
- Costa Rica last took part in the tournament in 2016
- Recommended bet:
Both teams to score

As always, Brazil will be considered Copa America title contenders, but there has been little in the South American giants' recent performances to suggest that Dorival Junior will be leading his side to glory in the US.

Costa Rica face a tough task to escape a section that also contains Colombia and Paraguay, but Los Ticos may have some joy at the SoFi Stadium in their Group D opener.

Team news

Brazil quartet Ederson, Casemiro, Richarlison and Neymar were all ruled out of the tournament through injury but there will still be plenty of familiar names in the line-up.

Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson will start in goal, West Ham star Lucas Paqueta is expected to be among the midfielders while Real Madrid pair Rodrygo and Vinicius Junior should also make the XI.

Brandon Aguilera, who spent the second half of last season on loan at Bristol Rovers from Nottingham Forest, is tipped to start in midfield for Cost Rica.

Experienced forward Joel Campbell, who has 27 goals for his country, is set to form part of a Costa Rican frontline which will also include promising performers Anthony Contreras and Alvaro Zamora.

The stats

Brazil have kept only one clean sheet in their last eight matches.

Costa Rica have scored 11 goals in their last five games, while Brazil have hit seven in their last three.

Brazil have won only one of their last five competitive matches.

Brazil have not been beaten by a CONCACAF opponent in over 12 years.


It has been a turbulent time for Brazil and the hope is that new boss Junior can bring some stability to the five-time World Cup winners. 

Junior was appointed in January, after Carlo Ancelotti opted to stay at Real Madrid, and Brazil have ground to make up after an extremely disappointing period under the guidance of Fernando Diniz. 

They are unbeaten in their last four matches, a run which includes a victory over England at Wembley, but those were all non-competitive matches and Brazil have lost their last three 2026 World Cup qualifiers. 

Junior is unbeaten as Brazil’s head coach, though, and there is talent in the squad but this is not a golden generation and there are clear signs of vulnerability.

Defensively, Junior’s side have kept only one clean sheet in their last eight matches and a likely back four of Danilo, Eder Militao, Marquinhos and Wendell is experienced, but aged. 

Costa Rica will fancy their chances of exposing a far from watertight Brazilian defence and Los Ticos, who have hit 11 goals in their last five games, can get on the scoresheet in California.

Clearly, Gustavo Alfaro’s men step up in class here, but forwards Alvaro Zamora, Anthony Contreras and Joel Campbell are talented performers and they can play their part in this Group D clash.

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