The Brazilian national team have always been regarded as one of the favourites in any tournament they play in. However, times have changed since their last World Cup triumph in 2002. Most notably, other teams have improved.
Spain have established themselves as, not only the best team in the world, but also one of the best teams of all-time. Largely consisting of Real Madrid and Barcelona players, they have dominated the last five years, winning the European Championship in 2008 & 2012, as well as their first World Cup in 2010.
Spain's first team is practically flawless, consisting of stars such as Xavi, Iniesta, Sergio Ramos, Jordi Alba, Iker Casillas, David Villa and many more world-class talents. But what is equally impressive is the quality of players that are not regarded as definite starters. The usual substitutes bench consists of players such as Juan Mata, David Silva, Santi Cazorla, Javi Martinez, Fernando Torres and Victor Valdes.
Many experts and pundits consider the squad of players Spain manager Vicente Del Bosque has the luxury to choose from as the greatest team of all-time, and it would be hard to argue.
So, who could end Spain's era of domination? None other than five-time World Cup winners Brazil. The expectation for next year’s World Cup in Brazil is anything other than a triumph will be considered a failure. So how can the relatively-young players of Brazil cope with such pressure?
The Brazilian national team have always been expected to challenge for major tournaments due to their rich history which has featured magical moments from the likes of Pele, Zico, Romario, Ronaldinho and Ronaldo.
How does Brazil's starting XI compare to Spain's? Many would argue that Brazil's team is worthy enough to challenge for the greatest honour available in football. With stars such as Thiago Silva, Dani Alves, David Luiz, Oscar, Hulk and Neymar on show, it will be hard to doubt Brazil's chances.
During the current Confederations Cup tournament, both Spain and Brazil remain the only teams to win all of their group games, with exciting displays throughout. With a possible meeting in the final, maybe it will give football fans a clearer indication as to whether Brazil are worthy of challenging Spain next year in the World Cup.
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