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Paul Scholes exclusive: Toni Kroos is brilliant – I’d love to see him at Manchester United (but Germany have some weaknesses)

After some nice predictions in the first set of Round of 16 games (including Brazil to win on penalties), the ex-England international gives his no-nonsense take on Monday's huge games in the World Cup...

by Paul Scholes | June 30, 2014

France v Nigeria

Estádio Nacional de Brasilia, Brasília, Monday, 5pm

  • It first struck me when I saw them in a friendly before the World Cup but France have got a fantastic squad and they’ve really impressed me. It’s this strength-in-depth which can see them make the semi-finals, at least, of the World Cup.
  • I’m a fan of Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema who’s scored three and created 12 goal-scoring chances in three matches. The Paris St-Germain midfielder Blaise Matuidi, who scored in France’s 5-2 win over Switzerland, also stands out and the strength, power and playmaking skills of Juve’s Paul Pogba is another big asset for the French.
  • With wins against Switzerland and Honduras, and a draw against Ecuador, France have not been tested properly yet. I don’t expect Nigeria to be the team to do this.
  • Nigeria have some slightly above-average Premier League players but I fancy France to win this comfortably.

My correct score match prediction: 2-0 (Betting > Take Paul Scholes’ tip at 11/2)

  • Scroll down for Paul’s take on Toni Kroos and Germany v Algeria …

Toni Kroos

Germany v Algeria

Estádio Beira-Rio, Porto Alegre, 9pm Monday.

  • Joachim Löw’s strategy of using four centre-backs has managed to keep two clean sheets in the group games for Germany. However, there are weaknessess in his team.
  • He must be doing something right with more than 100 caps but Per Mertesacker is slow and cumbersome while at left-back the Shalke centre-half, Benedikt Höwedes, looks a little vulnerable. Mats Hummels is not the quickest either. This something Algeria can exploit.
  • Algeria showed they can score, with four against South Korea, and could get a goal against Germany for the reasons I’ve highlighted.
  • I love watching Toni Kroos (pictured above). I think he’s brilliant. I love the way he controls the ball and controls games. He can really play a pass and has superb vision. Kroos is capable of scoring goals too, from outside the box on either foot. I just wish Man United had signed him (Yes, it is good to see United bringing in new players, but they haven’t signed anything like the quality of Kroos).
  • Ultimately, the strengths of Germany should see them win, comfortably.

My correct score match prediction: Germany to win 3-1 (Betting > Take Paul Scholes’ tip at 10/1 | Toni Kroos anytime and Germany to win at 3/1)

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