SAO PAULO (AP) -- Brazil will begin the World Cup with the same starting lineup that won last year's Confederations Cup.
Croatia is led by Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric but won't be at full strength. Coach Niko Kovac can't count on Bayern Munich forward Mario Mandzukic, who was red-carded in the team's final qualifier. Just before the tournament he also lost experienced midfielder Niko Kranjcar, and defender Josip Simunic didn't make it to the World Cup after being handed a 10-match ban by FIFA for leading fans in a pro-Nazi chant after a qualifying match.
The two Brazilian-born players in Croatia's squad, Eduardo Silva and Sammir, will start on the bench.
- Sports & Recreation
- Thiago Silva
- Luka Modric
- Luiz Felipe Scolari
- Mario Mandzukic
- Bayern Munich