Despair for Brazil, as they drop two points against Switzerland. To be fair, neither of the teams dominated the proceedings, or looked worthy of earning three points. So in the end, a point for both sides seem fair.
Brazil had taken lead through a pelter of a goal from Coutinho. Despite not threatening for most parts, Switzerland equalized in the 50th minute from a set piece. Shaqiri's corner was met by Zuber, and he headed the ball past a hapless Alisson. There were cries from the Brazil players for a foul by the goalscorer on the goalkeeper, but the referee did not listen to any of it.
In the end, Brazil tried hard to score the winner, but failed. Neymar wasn't particularly great for them. Much to improve for Tite and his side ahead of the next match.
FULL TIME: Brazil 1-1 Switzerland
90' + 5': Free kick for Brazil, with less than a minute to go. Neymar stands over the set piece. It's now or never for Brazil. He puts the ball in the box, but it is desperately defended out for corner.
90' + 1': WIDE! Brazil get a corner. And it's taken short. The ball is then sent to Renato Augusto in the box, whose shot is wide of the goal. Despair for Brazil.
90': Good save by Sommer. Brazil get a free kick deep on the left side. Neymar takes it, and the delivery is met by Firmino. But Sommer deals with effort. FIVE MINUTES ADDED ON!
88': Straight at the keeper! William teases the defender on the right wing, and plays a brilliant cross in the box. Neymar meets it with a powerful header, but its straight down the throat of Sommer.
87': Switzerland make their final change. Skipper Lichtsteiner is taken off, and is replaced by Lang.
82': Chance for Firmino! A long ball is poorly defended by Swiss defense. The ball reaches to Firmino in the penalty box, but hits wide from a tight angle.
80': Second change by Switzerland. Seferovic is replaced by Embolo.
79': Jesus is the one sacrificed, with Firmino coming in to add much needed energy.
78': The introduction of Firmino is imminent, and he watches from the sideline, waiting for his chance. Meanwhile, Neymar tests Sommer with a strike from 25 yards out.
73': Good chance for Dzemaili! Shaqiri is free down the right, and he lays the ball towards his teammate. His effort from the left foot is straight at Alisson. CONTROVERSY! Jesus is tackled inside the penalty box, but the referee gives nothing. The player and his teammates look stunned!
71': Chance for Coutinho! Neymar gets the ball in the centre, and he plays a lovely pass over the defense to Coutinho. But Coutinho's effort is well wide. Meanwhile, Behrami is taken off by Switzerland.
68': Behrami fouls Neymar, and the referee gives a free kick. The Swiss midfielder also gets a yellow card for constant fouls.
67': William has an effort from range, but it's miles wide. Brazil make their second change. Renato Augusto comes on for Paulinho.
65': Yellow card for Schar, for a blatant foul on Neymar. The Brazilian forward had beaten him, and was heading towards the Swiss penalty area. But the defender pulled him back to concede a free kick.
59': Casemiro has an effort from far out. But it's wide. And that's his last contribution, as he is replaced by Fernandinho.
57': Corner for Brazil, after Neymar's shot was deflected out. Prior to that, Coutinho had two attempts, but both were bravely blocked by the Swiss defense.
55': On a second look, Behrami continues, and seems to have recovered.
54': Behrami is down for Switzerland, and it doesn't look good. The centre midfielder seems set to be headed off.
50': GOAL! Switzerland get a corner. Shaqiri puts in a good delivery in the box, and the ball is headed in the back of the net by Zuber. He literally had a free header right in front of the goal. Poor defending. On the second look, it looks a clear foul by Zuber on Miranda. Brazil are aggrieved.
47': Yellow card! A customary booking for Casemiro for a poor tackle on Dzemaili. The holding midfielder is used to receiving a booking nearly every match.
46': First effort of this half by Switzerland. Dzemaili receives the ball almost 30 yards from the goal. He takes an effort, but sails well wide.
THE SECOND HALF IS UNDERWAY!
Not the most exciting first half, yet, Brazil won't mind. They have't played particularly well, but still lead thanks to a gorgeous strike from Coutinho. As for Switzerland, they have had the ball, but have done literally nothing with it. Shaqiri and Xhaka need to step up if Swiss are to get a goal.
HALF TIME: Brazil 1-0 Switzerland
45' + 2': Corner for Brazil, with just over a minute to play in the half. Neymar takes the corner, and it's just headed over by Silva.
44': Good possession, but poor final product. Switzerland aren't finding the creative spark needed to open the Brazilian defense.
40': Not many chances coming for either side. But the possession is being held by Switzerland. Though, they are struggling to do much up the field.
32': Marcelo takes the resulting free kick, but it's defended out for a corner. The resulting delivery is really good from Neymar, but the header from Jesus is wayward, and the ball reaches back to PSG forward, who is offside.
31': Yellow card! Switzerland skipper Lichtsteiner gets a booking for pulling back Neymar as he was breaking forward.
30': It's Switzerland who are dominating the possession, but much of it is in their own half. They aren't able to do much with the ball.
27': That strike has knocked the stuffing out of Switzerland, who were the better team earlier on. And what can you say about that strike from Coutinho. He keeps on doing the same thing again and again.
20': GOAL! What a strike from Coutinho. He gets the ball on the left side. All he needs is one touch, and BOOM! Sommer has no chance to save it.
19': Shaqiri, who started on the right, is slowly but steadily drifting towards the middle when his team has the ball. On his day, he can be a world beater.
17': Brilliant play, but no end result! Neymar in the Switzerland half plays a deft touch, allowing Coutinho to break free. The Barcelona man puts a through ball for Jesus, but his low cross is held by Sommer.
16': It is Neymar who takes it, but it's an horrible attempt, as his shot hits the midriff of a player in the wall.
15': Free kick for Brazil in a dangerous position. Neymar was the one fouled, and he seems interested in taking this.
13': Brilliant play from Jesus. He gets to the wing, and after a couple of step overs, puts in a good cross. But there are no takers for it.
11': What a chance for Brazil! They pass around the Switzerland penalty box. Neymar puts the ball in the box, but it is poorly dealt by the defense., The ball reaches to Paulinho. The Barcelona midfielder's miscued effort goes just wide of the far post.
9': Marcelo must be one of the luckiest player in the world. At Real Madrid, he has Cristiano Ronaldo in front of him. At Brazil, he has Neymar.
6': Willian has his first attempt to take on Rodriguez. He gets to the byline, and whips in a cross, but its too pacey for any forward to attack. After the ball goes out, the referee gives Xhaka a warning for pulling Neymar's shirt.
3': First chance for the Swiss team! Shaqiri finds space on the right, and whips in a nice delivery in the box. The onrushing Dzemaili can't keep his shot down.
2': A positive start by Switzerland, as they have the early possession. They make their way forward, but can't create a chance.
AND WE KICK OFF!
So this is how both the teams will line-up for the big encounter.
Let's look at the starting XI for both the teams.
Brazil kick off their World Cup 2018 campaign against Switzerland. The five-time champions are aiming to move on from the 2014 edition, where they were thrashed 7-1 by Germany in the semi-finals. The 2002 champions will be spearheaded by Neymar, though, there are others like Coutinho and Gabriel Jesus who will be key for them.
So this is it! The World Cup is back after four long years. This edition is being played in Russia. The tournament commences on June 14, and will conclude on July 15. Hosts Russia will play the first match against Saudi Arabia.
Defending champions Germany are on of the favorites to retain their crown, though, they will face stiff competition from 2010 champions Spain, 1998 winners France and five-time champions Brazil. While these three teams are expected to win, the likes of Argentina, Portugal and England are the outsiders to take home the trophy.
While these are the teams expected to win the trophy, there are three 'black horses' for the tournament.
1. Belgium: There is a very strong reason to consider Belgium as favorites, but it's way too early for that. The team managed by Roberto Martinez has many outstanding players like Eden Hazard, Romelu Lukaku, Thibaut Courtois and Kevin de Bruyne. The quality in their midfield is second to none. Yet, they are no Spain or Germany. The growth of Belgium has begun only in recent time, and its fair to say not many within the team would actually believe they go till the end. Though, it won't be wrong to say given the quality they have, a surprise is very possible.
2. Croatia: They are arguably in the Group of Death, yet, the Croatian team will feel extremely confident of passing the group stage comfortably. That is a very minimum which the team should dream of, given they have the likes of Luka Modric, Ivan Rakitic, Ivan Perisic and Mario Mandzukic. The quality in their midfield is particulary good, and that might make them dream of winning the trophy. But in all honesty, that is improbable.
3. Uruguay: They were the dark horses back in 2010, they are the dark horses in 2018 as well. There is no denying the quality they possess. Well, not many teams can say they have two world class defenders in Diego Godin and Jose Gimenez, and two strikers in Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani. Yet, beyond these four players, there isn't much quality. The good thing for Uruguay though is the fact they can claim to have the easiest group, with Russia, Saudi Arabia and Egypt as their opponents. A qualification from group stages should be all but confirmed, and with the four world class players, you can put a cent on them doing the unthinkable.
A couple of teams have suffered off the field issues ahead of the extravaganza. Spain saw a change in their head coach, as Fernando Hierro took over from Julen Lopetegui, who was sacked on Wednesday following his decision to sign a contract with Real Madrid on Tuesday.
Germany also have been hit by an issue to couple of their players. Mesut Ozil and Ilkay Gundogan have been caught in controversy following their decision to take a picture with the Turkish President earlier this May.
It sparked outrage within their country, with a section of fans booing Gundogan and Ozil during Germany's friendlies against Austria and Saudi Arabia. Their manager, Joachim Low though, came out in their support, and criticized the fans for their reaction towards their players.