Brazil Under-23s vs. Germany Under-23s: prediction, team news, lineups

International Stadium Yokohama hosts a rematch of the Rio de Janeiro 2016 final as Germany and Brazil meet in the men’s football competition at Tokyo 2020 in the opening match of their respective Group D campaigns.

They convene at Yokohama’s Nissan Stadium, five years after the Selecao finally won Olympic gold for the first time by beating the Germans on penalties, in a redemptive finale at the Maracana.

One of the major football nations which takes the quest for podium places suitably seriously, Brazil have qualified for seven of the last nine Olympic Games, claiming two bronzes, three silvers and – at last – gold in Rio.

In fact, only once since 1976 have they failed to win a medal at all, but at the South American Under-23 Championships which serves as the continent’s qualifying process, the Selecao were just 90 minutes away from failing to book their trip to Japan.

East Germany claimed the gold medal in 1976, while the West managed to secure bronze 12 years later in Seoul, but the most recent Games was the first time for 60 years that a united German side actually competed.

The European side went all the way to the final in the 2016 edition before losing on penalties to the Brazilians. They will be seeking some measure of revenge in Thursday’s Group D opener but will ultimately be hoping to go one better at this year’s competition.

The only previous meeting between both teams at this level was in the final of the Rio 2016 Olympics with the Brazilians winning on penalties after a 1-1 draw.

Defending champions Brazil should be too strong for Germany and are likely to kickstart the defence of their gold medal with a victory.

Our prediction: Brazil win @ 2.13

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