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Previewing Day 18 of the FIFA World Cup

Part of our 2018 FIFA World Cup Hub

The Round of 16 of the world’s biggest sporting event continues tomorrow, with games starting at 10am and 2pm.

Mexico are looking to match their best performance by reaching the quarterfinals for the 3rd time, after Mexico 1970 and Mexico 1976.

Japan are looking to reach the quarterfinals for the first time in their history.

The two winners will play each other in a quarterfinal on Friday, July 6.


The five-time champions will face Mexico for their next challenge. Brazil were champions at Sweden 1958, Chile 1962, Mexico 1970, USA 1994, and Korea-Japan 2002. Mexico’s best performance was reaching the quarterfinals in Mexico 1970 and Mexico 1986. At the last World Cup, the Brazilian hosts finished 4th and the Mexicans fell to the Netherlands at the Round of 16.

The two sides first met in the Group Stage of Brazil 1950, where the hosts won 4-0. Mexico would be eliminated and Brazil would finish runners-up.

They met again in the Group Stage at the next World Cup in Switzerland 1954, where Brazil won 5-0. Mexico would again be eliminated and Brazil would fall to Hungary in the next round.

They met in another Group Stage in Chile 1962, where Brazil won 2-0. Mexico would once again be eliminated and Brazil would go on to win a 2nd consecutive World Cup.

They also met in the Final of the 1996 Gold Cup in the USA, where Mexico won 2-0, winning the Gold Cup for the 2nd consecutive time.

They met again the following year at Copa America in Bolivia, where Brazil won 3-2. Mexico would finish 3rd and Brazil would win the title.

They met later that same year for the Confederations Cup in Saudi Arabia, where Brazil again won 3-2. Mexico would be eliminated and Brazil would win the cup.

They met twice at the 1999 Copa America in Paraguay, Brazil winning 2-1 in the Group Stage, then winning 2-0 in the semifinals. Mexico would finish 3rd and Brazil would win a 2nd consecutive title.

They met again that year at the Final of the Confederations Cup in Mexico, where Mexico won 4-3 to win their first title.

Their extensive history continued into the Group Stage of the 2001 Copa America in Colombia, where Mexico beat Brazil 1-0. Brazil would be eliminated by Honduras in the next round and Mexico would finish runners-up to the hosts.

They met twice more in the 2003 Gold Cup in USA-Mexico. Mexico won 1-0 in the Group Stage, then won 1-0 again in golden goal extra-time in the Final.

Brazil beat Mexico 4-0 in the quarterfinals of the 2004 Copa America in Peru. Brazil went on to win the title.

Mexico then beat Brazil 1-0 in the Group Stage of the 2005 Confederations Cup in Germany. Mexico would finish 4th and Brazil would win the title.

Mexico beat Brazil 2-0 at the 2007 Copa America in Venezuela. Mexico would finish 4th and Brazil would be champions, successfully defending their 2004 title.

At the 2013 Confederations Cup in Brazil, the hosts won 2-0. Mexico would be eliminated and Brazil would go on to win the title for the 3rd time in a row.

They met again in the Group Stage of Brazil 2014, that game finishing 0-0. Brazil finished 4th and Mexico was eliminated by the Netherlands in the next round.

Their last meeting was a 2015 friendly in Brazil, where the home team won 2-0.

This will be their 5th World Cup meeting, with Brazil heavily favoured to advance.

Brazil to Advance: 78.3%

Mexico to Advance: 21.7%


Belgium will face Japan. Japan have already equalled their best ever performances at Korea-Japan 2002, and South Africa 2010. Belgium’s best performance was in Mexico 1986 when they reached the semifinals. At the last World Cup, Japan was eliminated at the Group Stage, and Belgium was eliminated in the quarterfinals.

A Japanese win would send them into the quarterfinals for the first time.

These sides first met in a 1999 friendly in Japan, which ended in a scoreless draw.

They also met in Korea-Japan 2002, where the hosts held Belgium to a 2-2 draw. Both teams would be eliminated in the Round of 16.

Their last meeting was in a 2017 friendly in Belgium, where the hosts won 1-0.

This will be their 2nd World Cup meeting, and a Japanese win would be considered a big upset.

Belgium to Advance: 82.1%

Japan to Advance: 17.9%

Published by
Mika Ryu
Tags: BrazilFIFA World CupMexico

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