Photo by ISIPhotos.com
By DAN KARELL
The World Cup Round of 16 continues on Monday with two matches that could be as unpredictable as the last two.
While France enter as the favorites, they face their toughest opponent of the tournament yet when they take on Nigeria at the Estadio Mane Garrincha in Brasilia (12 p.m. ESPN). France head coach Didier Deschamps has kept the 4-3-3 formation with both Olivier Giroud and Karim Benzema starting but it will be the midfield pair of Paul Pogba and Blaise Matuidi who will be asked to work their socks off in attack and defending the likes of Ahmed Musa.
Along with John Obi Mikel and Ogenyi Onazi, Nigeria features a midfield trio that physically matches up very well to the French trio, in what should be an end-to-end game.
In the second match of the day, Algeria will take the spirit of their 1982 side that were robbed of a place in the knockout rounds when face Germany at the Estadio Beira-Rio in Porto Alegre (4 p.m. ESPN). Few expected Algeria to make it this far but their hard-working squad will be extra motivated against the Germans, especially the French-born players who grew up next door.
Germany will need to take their game to another level, after a solid performance in the heat and rain against the USA in Recife. In the colder temperatures of Southeast Brazil, head coach Joachim Löw must like his chances to advance.
If you will be watching today’s matches, please feel free to share your thoughts, opinions and some play-by-play in the comments section below.
Enjoy the action.