Giants collide eyeing summit
© Getty Images

The second round of matches in Group D will see a clash potentially pivotal to the outcome of the section, with Brazil and Norway meeting in Wolfsburg. The two teams have a rich history in the FIFA Women's World Cup™, with the Scandinavians emerging triumphant in 1995 and the South Americans finishing as runners-up four years ago. Brazil have a marginally superior head-to-head record and have also been left celebrating at the end of their two previous encounters with Norway in the tournament in 1999 and 2003, although the former was on penalties.

The game
Brazil-Norway, Sunday 3 July, Wolfsburg, 18.15pm (local time)

The stakes
With both teams securing three points in their respective opening matches, this contest will go a long way towards deciding qualification in the group, if not top spot. However, both Brazil and Norway were made to work hard before edging 1-0 victories over Australia and Equatorial Guinea respectively. Both were energy-sapping contests played four days earlier, with Kleiton Lima's troops dealing with youthful and vibrant opponents and Norway sweating it out in Augsburg’s afternoon heat.

Curiously, the pair may take solace from the fact they could only muster narrow wins. Brazil will surely see more productive output from Marta, with the five-time FIFA World Player of the Year turning in a subdued performance against the Aussies. Norway, for their part, created a host of chances and, but for some modest finishing and bad luck in front of goal, could have won by a far greater margin.

The stat
7
– The number of previous meetings between the two teams, with Brazil claiming three wins, Norway two, and two matches ending all square.

The words
"We have to improve. Whenever we have the possibility to play in a collective fashion we do it. We need Marta but we need the ten other players. Despite the fact the players are very experienced, they might be nervous, they might have been anxious in the first game, but that's now out of the way,” Kleiton Lima, Brazil coach.

“We’re going to have to do better against Brazil. However, after that win we’re confident now - and I’m really excited about that match. Brazil are one of the best teams in women’s football,” Emilie Haavi, Norway forward.