The World Cup wraps up its Thanksgiving slate with a Group G match between Brazil and Serbia. The match kicks off at 2 p.m. ET and will air on FOX. It is taking place at Lusail Stadium in Lusail.
The match officiating crew will be led by an Iranian team that includes referee Alireza Faghani. Four years ago, Faghani was a referee at the World Cup in Russia. He handled four matches include Germany-Mexico and Serbia-Brazil in the group stage, France-Argentina in the Round of 16, and Belgium-England in the third place game. For those four matches, he handed out four, three, eight, and three yellow cards, respectively. Prior to that, he was the referee for the gold medal game at the 2016 Summer Olympics, He handed out six yellow cards in Brazil's win in penalties kicks over Germany.
Brazil is a big favorite in their World Cup opener, with -220 odds to win at DraftKings Sportsbook. Serbia is a +600 underdog and a draw is installed at +370. Brazil is a perennial favorite, but hasn't won since 2002. The past four tournaments included a fourth place finish in 2014 and quarterfinal exits in 2018, 2010, and 2006. Serbia hasn't gotten out of the group stage since a Round of 16 appearance in 1998. They finished 23rd with a win and two losses in each of 2018 and 2010, and did not qualify in 2014.
Total cards for Thursday's match is set at 4.5 with the under priced at -135 and the over at +100. Faghani's officiating crew for the match will include the following, with roles and nationalities included (h/t Law 5 – The Referee):
- Assistant Referee 1: Mohammadreza Mansouri (IRN)
- Assistant Referee 2: Mohammadreza Abolfazli (IRN)
- Fourth Official: Maguette N'Diaye (SEN)
- Reserve Assistant Referee: Malick El Hadj Samba (SEN)
- Video Assistant Referee: Abdullah Al-Marri (QAT)
- Assistant Video Assistant Referee: Muhammad Taqi (SIN)
- Offside Video Assistant Referee: Anton Shchetinin (AUS)
- Support Video Assistant Referee: Pol van Boekel (NED)
- Standby Assistant Video Assistant Referee: Ashley Beecham (AUS)