Brazil are destined to start as perennial favourites for every
World Cup. Shockingly, they almost missed out on a berth at
the finals, having made it at the last gasp in the qualifiers.
Exponents of the 'Beautiful Game', today Brazil is struggling. The
local federation is mired in mismanagement and corruption. It took
four coaches and 60 players for Brazil to qualify. And Luiz Felipe Scolari, the current coach prefers a hacker's approach rather than the sublime attacking style which the gifted Brazilians are famed for.
Still, Brazil may just shrug off all its ills. Upfront, Ronaldo
has a point to prove after his listless performance in the finals
at France '98. Ronaldinho is touted to follow in the footsteps of
In midfield, Rivaldo is a peach, but he is yet to reproduce his
scintillating form with Barcelona for Brazil. Denilson is another
wizard who tends to hold on to the ball rather than distribute it.
Paulista is the man in form and could be a revelation.
At the back, Cafu and Roberto Carlos are hard working, possess
booming shots and roam upfield to create openings, but can
disappoint with their inconsistency.
All said and done, Brazil can't be written off. Brilliant one day,
pedestrian the next, they should make it to the semis. But then
again, you never know with Brazil.
D 0-0 Columbia
W 3-2 Ecuador
W 1-0 Peru
D 1-1 Uruguay
L 1-2 Paraguay
W 3-1 Argentina
L 0-3 Chile
W 5-0 Bolivia
W 6-0 Venezuela
W 1-0 Colombia
D 1-1 Peru (h)
L 0-1 Uruguay
W 2-0 Paraguay
L 1-2 Argentina
W 2-0 Chile
L 3-1 Bolivia
W 3-0 Venezuela