Football - a rage and craze in Brazil! The national football team of Brazil is among the strongest in the world. And the team has won five world championships (1958, 1962, 1970, 1994, and 2002), the highest by any team in the world.
Brazilian football has been growing ever since the team started playing in 1914. Today’s number one football team played its first match against Argentina. Brazil have appeared in all eighteen football world cups since 1930. Winning five out of eighteen championships was not possible without some of the world’s finest players. Pele, Ronaldo, Ronaldinho, and Kaka, are to name a few. Pele is the most successful player in the history of Brazilian football with 77 goals in 92 matches followed by Ronaldo with 62 in 97 games.
Pele played for Brazil from 1958 to 1970. This time is also known as his golden era or Pele’s era of Brazilian football. Pele was playing his last world cup in 1970 and led the Brazilian football team to win it. Since then Brazil football has seen several ups and downs. In 1993, the team acquired the peak position of the FIFA ranking however, in the same year they were at number eight, which is the lowest ranking for them till date.
Currently, CBF (Brazil Football Confederation) is the governing body for Brazilian national football team. the Brazilian national football team has several nicknames. The most common of them is A Seleção, which means The Selection. Other names are based on their dress colors, for example, Amarelinha which literally means little yellow and "Verde-amarela" which is "Green-yellow". The team got nickname "Pentacampeão", which signifies their five world cup titles as the term means five time champions.
At present, the kit of the national football team of Brazil comprises of a yellow jersey with green collars and blue shorts with white trim. The goalkeeper’s kit consists of black and grey jersey and black shorts. This kit was designed by nineteen years old Aldyr Garcia Schlee in 1954 and has been used since then. Before this design Brazil national football team has tried various plain and striped kits from 1914 to 1953.
The present kit of the Brazil national football team incorporates all four colors of Brazilian Flag. Previously, in 1918 all four colors were tried for the kit however, that design lasted for only a year. Striped jersey was experimented in 1916 and 1919. However, since 1954 yellow jersey has become the emblem of the team.
World cup qualifying matches will be held at various venues in Brazil as it does not have any national stadium. Estádio do Maracanã in Rio de Janeiro, Estádio do Morumbi in São Paulo and Estádio Mané Garrincha in Brasília were among the venues. The current Brazil national football team has been qualified for the 2010 world cup and practicing under coach Dunga. The eam has learning new tactics and strategies under coach Dunga since 2006.
Currently, the squad doesn’t have big names like Ronaldo or Ronaldinho and the team is quite young, however, it's backed by some experienced players like mid fielders Kaka and Gilberto Silva, defenders Lucio and Juan and forwards Adriano and Robinho. The football team has some new faces but they have already proved their mettle while playing with provincial clubs. Goalkeeper Victor, defender Filipe, and midfielder Sandro are some of the new entrants in Brazil national football team. Twenty year old Sandro played for Internacional club. A £14 m bid from Tottenham Hotspur was rejected by the team for the midfielder.
The Brazilian national football team now relies on forward player Luis Fabiano who has scored 23 goals in 32 games. Midfielder Julio Baptista and defender Maicon are two other experienced players and the team can count on them.
This team’s recent victories include 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup which was held in South Africa. Luis Fabiano was the top scorer with five goals and Kaka was announced player of the tournament after defeating USA in final with final score 3-2.
Brazil hold five time world champion however; they have never won a gold medal in Olympic football tournament. The team won two silver and two bronze medals in the years 1984, 1988, 1996 and 2008, respectively.
Brazil also has anational under 20's football team. This team is also recognized as the back support of national football team. The U-20 team is also known as Brazil Sub-20 or Seleção. They also won U-20 world cup four times in the years1983, 1985, 1993, and 2003. Other milestone for this team includes 10 times South American Youth Championship.
In Brazil, football is not restricted to men only. Women’s national football team also has a good rapport in the world of football. The women’s team is trying to grab the top spot in FIFA ranking as they strive to beat hard the USA contingent. Arguably the best performance in any world cup by the team was in 2007, when they finished second in the tournament. This team also won the Pan American Games in the year 2003 and 2007. Marta is the highest scorer for Brazil women’s national football team till date with 47 goals. She also won FIFA world player of the year consecutively for three years (2006, 2007, and 2008).
Players from the Brazilian national team always get a phenomenally high bid from the clubs. Ronaldo was the most expensive Brazilian player when transferred to Real Madrid from Internazionale in 2002 and the bid was for €40m. Today, Brazilian football players playing for top notch clubs, for instance, Kaka is playing for Real Madrid, Ronaldinho is playing for AC Milan, and Diego is playing for Juventus. There are many more examples of Brazilian players who made into the big world of UEFA leagues, Italian Serie A and La Liga.
Five world cups; three Confederation cups; and eight Copa America cups make the Brazil national football team an undisputed monarch in the world of Football.