Perennial favourites Brazil and their star man Alexandre Pato
will attempt to tame dark horses Poland in their Group D opener on
Saturday. For the Selecao - winners of this tournament back at UAE
2003 - nothing less than three points will do.
Poland v Brazil, Montreal, 30 June, 14:15 (local time)
Little is known about Poland at this level, but qualifying through Europe is no mean feat. Nevertheless, in their first match the Poles will face an Auriverde team inspired by the likes of Alexandre Pato and Marcelo, and so will need their wits about them. With the USA favourites in the day's other group game, Brazil will be hoping for a big win to send a message.
Brazil captain and recent Liverpool signing, Lucas, is expected to be out of action for three weeks, but the side can count on the fine overall play of Pato and Marcelo. Poland, for their part, will be counting on the man they call 'the new Boniek,' Dawid Janczyk, in attack.
Poland have never played Brazil at youth level. The eastern Europeans return to the tournament after a 24-year absence, having last participated in 1983 in Mexico, where they secured third place.
Poland player Pawel Adamiec will celebrate his 20th birthday out on the Montreal pitch on 30 June.
"When my team goes out onto the pitch, it goes out to win. But then again, the same is true for national teams all over the world. We take it for granted that Brazil are always the favourite, but that means we have to put in twice as much effort." Brazil coach Nelson Rodrigues.
"There are no leaders in this team. What leads us is our togetherness. For sure, we'll miss our captain Lucas, but his replacement will be just as effective. It's the team that counts." Brazil goalkeeper Felipe.