Brazil Fifa World Cup 2018
Brazil Fifa World Cup 2018

Five-time champions Brazil, the most successful team at the Fifa World Cup, will be starting the upcoming 21st edition of the quadrennial tournament as one of the favourites for the title.

Selecao faced one of the biggest lows in their football history in the last edition's semi-final in front of their home crowd as they were crushed 7-1 by eventual champions Germany.

However, the South American giants have come a long way since then, winning the Rio Olympics gold and becoming the first team (apart from the hosts) to qualify for the Finals in Russia.

Brazil had endured trying times in the qualifying campaign and faced the risk of not qualifying before former coach Dunga was sacked. Once Tite took over the reigns, the second-ranked team have looked a threatening side.

Brazil football team
File photo of Brazilian national football team members.VLADIMIR SIMICEK/AFP/Getty Images

With a star-studded squad and a fit-again Neymar, Tite's men are being once again feared by oppositions. A full-strength Brazil squad is a delight for football fans as the Selecoes add flair and colour to the global spectacle, starting June 14 in Moscow.

Brazil are drawn in Group E along with Switzerland, Costa Rica, and Serbia. They begin their campaign against the Schweizer Nati on the first Sunday (June 17) of the tournament in Rostov-On-Don.

IBTimes, India has compiled a list of five players who are likely to be key to Brazil's campaign in Russia. Check them out below.


Neymar, Brazil
Eyes firmly on the prize for Neymar and Brazil.Buda Mendes/Getty Images

One of the best attackers in world football, the Paris Saint-Germain forward is Tite's trump card in Russia.

The 26-year-old cleared all doubts about his fitness by scoring a brilliant goal in Brazil's 2-0 win over Croatia in their pre-World Cup warm-up on June 3.

The said match was his first competitive appearance since going on the sidelines with a fractured metatarsal while playing for the Ligue 1 champions in February. He also scored in the team's 3-0 win over Austria on Sunday.

Having missed a World Cup berth in 2010 and suffered a campaign-ending injury in the quarter-final in 2014, Neymar would be hoping to deliver big for Tite's team in Russia.

Gabriel Jesus

Gabriel Jesus, Manchester City, FA Cup, semifinal, Arsenal
Gabriel Jesus is tipped for glory in Russia.Reuters

The 21-year-old has come a long way from the days he painted the streets and walls in Sao Paulo ahead of Brazil's 2014 World Cup campaign.

In Russia, he is set to play a key role for the five-time champions. Known for his mobility and the ability to work hard off the ball, the Manchester City striker is likely to start ahead of his Liverpool compatriot Roberto Firmino.


Coutinho Marcelo Brazil Modric Croatia
Marcelo will be one of the key members for Brazil in Russia.Alex Livesey/Getty Images

The Real Madrid full-back offers a lot of experience to the squad, having won quite a lot of titles with the La Liga giants.

Known for his pace and attacking prowess, Marcelo makes the Brazilian left side a big threat to oppositions. However, space the 30-year-old leaves behind him can work against the team's favour.


David De Gea, Casemiro, Jose Mourinho wants Casemiro for David De Gea, Dries Mertens, Manchester United transfer news, Real Madrid transfer news

In an attacking team like Brazil, the role of Casemiro, the holding midfielder is crucial. The 26-year-old Real Madrid midfield star adds a lot of balance to the team with his work rate and efficiency with tackles.

Alisson Becker

Alisson Becker
File photo of Alisson Becker.JOE KLAMAR/AFP/Getty Images

A lot of focus in Russia will be on Alisson, the AS Roma custodian who has grown leaps and bounds ever since joining the Serie A side in 2016.

The 26-year-old, who played a key role in his side's run to the Champions League semi-final faces stiff competition from Manchester City's Ederson for the starting spot in Russia.