Switzerland won't roll over for Portugal
Portugal and Switzerland will play out the final Last 16 game at the Lusail Stadium on Tuesday night, with the victors then taking on either Morocco or Spain at the weekend. Having lost to South Korea with a much changed XI in the last group match, A Seleção will at least be fresher than their knockout stage opponents, who ultimately triumphed in a ding-dong battle with Serbia to come through their pool. Read our preview here:
Bruno's boxing clever
As the on-field influence of Cristiano Ronaldo begins to visibly fade, others in Fernando Santos' squad are taking up the cudgels of creative and goalscoring responsibility as the superstar's time reaches its twilight stage. Manchester United right-back Diogo Dalot's performances down the flank have been highly praised, offering his side an outlet on the flanks in a side that often overload teams through the middle of the park under their veteran head coach. His teammate for both club and country Bruno Fernandes has two goals and the same number of assists to his name at the tournament, signposting life after Ronaldo in either situation is unlikely to harm their respective aspirations. There are likely to be three squad members unavailable, but such is the strength in depth across the pitch that the likes of Nuno Mendes, Danilo Pereira, and Otávio all being out won't have much of a bearing on the approach or the outcome.
Shaqiri's hips don't lie
Xherdan Shaqiri proved against Serbia that there's still plenty of potency left in the diminutive attacking midfielder's legs when he grabbed the opener in that tempestuous encounter filled with political and ethnic subtext. Moreover, he's likely to have some space to work in here, given his on-pitch adversary Raphaël Guerreiro is far more at ease when bombing forwards, and with the impressive Breel Embolo up top and Rubén Vargas roaming between the lines, there are other outlets Murat Yakin's side can utilise. Yann Sommer is set to return between the sticks, and if it comes down to it, is an impressive penalty saver as well as possessing a wealth of experience at the top level.
Though Portugal are favourites on paper, Switzerland have proven in recent tournaments that they can never be written off. betway have odds of 3.40 for a draw after 90 minutes, and it might take the lottery of a shootout to separate the sides as it did Croatia and Japan.