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Brazil were favorites to win the World Cup before their Confederations Cup triumph. Now they are overwhelming favorites.
It is worth noting that according to the current FIFA ranking system, Brazil are ranked as the 22nd-best team in world football. In his six matches in charge prior to the Confederations Cup, Luiz Felipe Scolari's record reads as W-1 D-4 L-1. Now it reads as W-7 D-4 L-1.
The balance sheet, from a point of dispiritment and doom and gloom, now looks toward the future with great optimism.
Neymar, after years of being compared to the likes of Pele and Lionel Messi, finally showed his potential and turned on the style during the Confederations Cup. Corinthians' Paulinho, Bayern Munich's Luiz Gustavo and Atletico Mineiro's Bernard all burst onto the international scene and look like world-class players.
From a point where Brazil lacked a cohesive defensive unit, a midfield that lacked experience, and a front line that lacked a focal point, without Fred, they now look a formidable team.
The Confederations Cup has been a massive success for Scolari and his team. It gave the ex-Chelsea boss an entire month to work on his team, and now as 2014 approaches, he only needs to tweak it.
Brazil, in front of their home crowd, will take some beating.
Recent Form: W-13 L-5 D-2
Statistics provided by FIFA and UEFA
Betting Odds provided by Oddschecker
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