World Cup - Last time they met: Brazil vs Croatia

World Cup hosts Brazil open this years tournament against Croatia tonight but what happened the last time they met each other?

Tonight's World Cup curtain raiser will see Brazil play Croatia for just the third time with Croatia yet to beat the South American's in two previous attempts.

They last met in the group stages of the 2006 World Cup and the Brazilians ran out 1-0 victors on that day courtesy of a terrific Kaka strike from the edge of the box.

It was both sides World Cup opener in that tournament too and Brazil made history with the win by beating Italy's seven-game win streak in World Cup matches in a run that reached 11 during the same tournament before they were beaten by France in the quarter-finals.

The loss was Croatia's first defeat in eleven competitive games as they had not lost for two years, since a defeat to England at Euro 2004.

A star-studded lineup saw the likes of Cafu, Roberto Carlos, Ronaldinho, Kaka and Ronaldo lineup for the Brazilians who beat Croatia in front of 72,000 at the Olympiastadion in Berlin.

Croatian manager Niko Kovac captained the side that day, and he will lead the European side at this summer's tournament in Brazil alongside his brother and assistant manager Robert Kovac who also played against the five-time winners in Germany.

Both players picked up a yellow card and will need to keep their emotions under control from the dugout in tonight's meeting if Croatia are to cause a major upset against the tournament favourites.

Only three players from the game eight years ago will be a part of this year's World Cup, all of whom are Croatian.

Former Spurs goalkeeper Stipe Pletikosa, current captain Dario Srna and striker Ivica Olic all played in 2006 and have made the Vatreni squad this year.

Pletikosa made his 50th appearance for the Croatians in the match and has since gone on to get 111 international caps, and the 35-year-old is set to play between the sticks once more in what will be his third World Cup after Croatia missed the 2010 tournament.

Only two members of the Brazilian squad in 2006 will represent their country at this years competition in goalkeeper Julio Cesar, who was the third-choice shot-stopper, and striker Fred, who only saw two minutes of action in Germany.

Though both are expected to play a prominent role in the Selecao's bid for a sixth World Cup trophy on home soil this summer.

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