Fresh off their championship performance at the 2013 Confederations Cup, Brazil will travel to Basel on Wednesday for an international friendly with Switzerland.
Brazil (No. 9) and Switzerland (No. 15) are both highly rated by FIFA.com's rankings.
The Selecao are unbeaten in their last 11 matches, a streak that includes going undefeated at the Confederations Cup and taking down No. 1-ranked Spain 3-0 in the tournament final.
Simply put, Brazil is on a roll.
Switzerland is looking to get back on the horse, so to speak, after playing just three matches in the last calendar year. The home side took down Cyprus their last time out but will face their toughest test to date against Brazil.
In preparation for this upcoming clash, here's a match preview so you won't miss any of the action.
Who: Brazil vs. Switzerland
What: International Friendly
When: Wednesday, Aug. 14, at 2:45 p.m. ET
Where: St Jakob-Park, Basel, Switzerland
Watch: beIN Sport
Live Stream: SFV-Play
Luiz Felipe Scolari is expected to bring most of his Confederations Cup roster with him to Basel.
As noted by Goal.com's Shane Callaghan, the Selecao will feature the same assortment of players as they did in June. That roster includes new Barcelona star Neymar, noted Premier League names David Luiz, Oscar and Paulinho as well as emerging strikers Fred and Hulk.
Brazil will be loaded once again for their latest international clash.
The 2014 World Cup hosts have been impressive in all facets of the game during their current winning streak. Julio Cesar didn't allow a goal in three of the country's five Confederations Cup matches. The attack, led by Neymar and Fred, was also strong—Brazil scored at least two goals in every tournament match.
Having already qualified for the World Cup, Brazil doesn't have the same motivation to win matches as a team like Switzerland does.
Starting with Brazil on Wednesday, La Nati are entering a crucial stretch.
Switzerland will play in four straight World Cup qualifying matches after facing Brazil. Starting Sept. 6 against Iceland, Ottmar Hitzfeld's outfit will also play Norway, Albania and Slovenia as they try and retain the top spot in the qualifying table.
Bayern Munich winger Xherdan Shaqiri might be the most notable star on Hitzfeld's roster, but that does not mean Switzerland is lacking in talent.
Stephan Lichtsteiner, Philippe Senderos and talented youngster Fabian Schaer are all expected to earn caps against Brazil, while the situation up front is expected to include Haris Seferovic and Mario Gavranovic competing for time.
The Miami Herald, via the Associated Press, had a full look at Switzerland's expected roster.
Both sides will look to build momentum for next summer and gain cohesiveness together on the pitch, but it's Switzerland who needs a strong showing with four crucial qualifiers scheduled to be played over the next few weeks.
Brazil and Switzerland are considered to be contenders for the World Cup next year based on their FIFA ranking. Although this match is technically considered a friendly, we're moving to the point in the World Cup cycle where that classification loses some of its meaning.
Scolari and Hitzfeld will tinker with their lineups in preparation for next summer's World Cup, but by the end of the day, the Selecao and La Nati will have put on a strong showing with the worldwide tournament inching closer by the day.
Brazil are peaking at the right time and have the experience of their latest trophy to lean on during their trip to Switzerland.
With a majority of Brazil's Confederations Cup squad making the trip and Switzerland focusing more on getting into top form before their next cluster of qualifiers, I see Brazil winning this match handily.
Brazil 3, Switzerland 1
Follow B/R's Ethan Grant (@DowntownEG) on Twitter.
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