SOCHI, June 13 (Sputnik) - Brazil midfielder Paulinho named Germany, France, Belgium, Spain and Argentina as 2018 FIFA World Cup favorites on Wednesday.
"Germany, France, Belgium, Spain are among the World Cup favorites. I will name these teams. Also I'll select Argentina, who also are among the favorites," Paulinho told journalists.
Brazil will play their first game of the tournament against Switzerland at the 45,000-seater Rostov Arena on Sunday.
"Switzerland are a strong team. I have an idea of how they play. First of all, I want to highlight their strong defense. We know it will be a tough game for us... We will play with passion," the 29-year-old player added.
The five-time World Cup winners will also face Costa Rica and Serbia in Group E at this summer's tournament, which will be held in Russia from June 14 to July 15.