Brazil's Alex Sandro fights for the ball with South Korea's Ji Dong-won (R) during their men's semi-final soccer match at the London 2012 Olympic Games at Old Trafford in Manchester, August 7, 2012. (Photo : REUTERS/David Moir)
Mexico's Carlos Salcido controls ball during their men's first round Group B football match against Switzerland in the London 2012 Olympic Games at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff August 1, 2012. (Photo : REUTERS/Francois Lenoir )
When Mexico and Brazil step on the field Saturday for the Gold Medal match, both squads will be battling for their first ever chance at Gold. For coming days, we will take a look at each squad in every area of the field to see which squad holds the edge.
Both teams are set to square off on Saturday August 11 at 10 a.m. EDT.
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The midfield is an area where both teams have reaped great benefits. But which team has the better set of midfielders.
Brazil's midfield has been a revolving door of players as coach Mano Menezes has been constantly altering his formation to try new strategies. His midfield is never a problem as it has been consistent at keeping possession and putting the ball into prime spots for forwards to benefit. However, it has not always been strong in communicating with the defense and fluidly moving the ball up the field from their own end.
Against Mexico, the midfield will be of greatest importance as this match will most certainly lead to a great wealth of chances on both ends due to the talent up top on both teams. However, Brazil's midfield will face their greatest defense to date in El Tri which has won thanks to a fluid communication between the midfield and defense as orchestrated by the brilliant hybrid defender-midfielder Carlos Sacido.
Fortunately for Brazil their talent in the midfielder is a bit deeper than that of Mexico, though less experienced.
Key Player: Sandro. He's had good days and bad days. The match against Korea was not one of those good days as he gave the ball up a few times too many. Oscar has been consistent, so the onus is on Sandro to step it up.
Carlos Salcido has been a career left full-back. Then he returned to Mexico and was placed in front of the defenders in the midfield and creating a hybrid position. He has been exemplary in not only adjusting but helping guide the young players around him into a strong and organized unit that has been easily the better of the two remaining defenses.
Mexico's midfield was at times lacking in creativity through the group stages, but has increased its level of aggression and has erupted for seven goals in two games after only three goals in the first three. More importantly, the communication between the defense and midfield in getting the ball up the fields has been strong throughout.
Key Player: Salcido is one of the veterans on the squad and needs to continue playing as such if Mexico is to win the gold. His defensive skills will be called upon to adjust to high end talents like Sandro and Oscar in the middle.
Edge: Even, though Brazil hasa slight advantage in skill and talent.
Read Why Mexico Will Win HERE.
Read Why Brazil Wiil WIn HERE.