Brazil Team - 2014 World Cup Betting
Best Finish: Champions in 1958, 1962, 1970, 1994 and 2002
Manager: Luiz Felipe Scolari
Captain: Thiago Silva
Key Player: Neymar (Barcelona)
Group A: With Cameroon, Croatia and Mexico
Brazil is the only national football team to both qualify for the World Cup every time and win the event five times. Given that they're also the host nation in 2014, there's no question which team everybody will be watching with interest.
This is especially the case when you consider how Brazil rolled through the 2013 Confederations Cup, which was also on their home soil. They beat Japan 3-0, Mexico 2-0 and Italy 4-2 while going undefeated in group play. Brazil got by Uruguay 2-1 before trouncing Spain in the final by a score of 3-0. So it's little wonder why Brazilian fans are expecting nothing else but a title in the 2014 World Cup.
One player who'll go a long way to trying to make this happen is Neymar. The 22-year-old has already scored 27 goals in international play. And with his incredible shooting skills, great dribbling and quick speed, Neymar is a good bet to add to this total at the Cup. Assuming he can lead Brazil to a title, he'll be on his way towards joining the legendary status of Pele, Ronaldo and Ronaldinho.
Helping Neymar on this journey will be Hulk, Oscar and Fred. These four formed the attack that saw Brazil steamroll the Confederations Cup competition, and they could possibly do the same in June and July.
The one concern for this team is the midfield. Paulinho and Luis Gustavo are two solid players who can also get physical. But when looking at Italy, Germany and Spain, Brazil's midfield isn't quite on par with the world's best. They also lack some depth at center forward, where Fred will be logging heavy minutes.
Of course, there could be a fair amount of rust in group play too. As the host nation, Brazil automatically qualified for the Cup. So they've spent less time playing meaningful minutes as a cohesive unit over the past several months. Whether all of this is enough to stop a very strong Brazil team from reaching the finals remains to be seen.