Partnering Pique in the heart of defence in this particular XI is Brazilian centre-back Luiz. It's been an extremely busy summer to date for the charismatic 27-year-old, with the pressures of a home World Cup to contend with as well as an imminent big-money transfer from Chelsea to Paris Saint-Germain that is scheduled to take place after the tournament reaches its climax.
With the weight of expectation resting firmly upon their shoulders, it is perhaps accurate to claim that the Selecao are yet to hit full stride. Despite this, a penalty shootout win over South American rivals Chile saw them safely through to the quarter-finals - although they will surely have to raise their game significantly if they are to triumph over James Rodriguez and Colombia.
Luiz - who partners current PSG defender Thiago Silva under Luiz Felipe Scolari but is equally adept at being deployed in central midfield - notched the opener in that aforementioned tense win over Chile and will need to remain in form if Brazil are to pass their next stern test.
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