FIFA WORLD CUP BRAZIL BY WILLIAM BURKE Brazil is the most successful national football team in the history of the FIFA World Cup, with five championships: 1958, 1962, 1970, 1994 and 2002. They are also the most successful team in the FIFA Confederations Cup with four titles. Brazil are the current holders of the FIFA Confederations Cup after winning the 1997, 2005, 2009 and 2013 edition of the tournament. Brazil is the only national team to have played in all FIFA World Cup editions without having any absence. Brazil have also qualified for every FIFA World Cup without the need for playoffs. Brazil’s national football team has the all-time highest average Football Elo Ranking in the World with 2010 and the second all-time highest Football Elo Ranking in the world in 1962, only behind the Hungarian Golden Team of 1954. Brazil won a total of 72 official international titles to professional and grassroots level selections, being a world record. Its achievements have led them to be considered as the most glorious and successful of all national teams from South America and the World. Playing at home, Brazil will be attracting more attention than usual at the World Cup. Without as many stars as in previous tournaments, Brazil coach Luiz Felipe Scolari will rely on a squad mixed with young talents such as Neymar and some more experienced players such as Thiago Silva. The era of Ronaldinho, Kaka and Robinho is clearly over for the five-time champions, so it will be up to the promising youngsters to carry the responsibility of giving Brazil the coveted title at home. Neymar joined the youth section of Santos FC at age 11. News of his abilities spread to Europe, and he was offered the chance to continue his development with Real Madrid at age 14, but the Santos team's management convinced Neymar to stay at Santos with a large bonus. Neymar made his senior debut for Santos in 2009 and lived up to the hype by earning the league's Best Young Player award. He emerged as a full-blown star in 2010, helping Santos claim the league and Copa do Brasil championships en route to the first of three straight scoring titles and four straight Player of the Year awards. That season he also made his debut for the senior national team and debuted a Mohawk-style haircut, which quickly became popular among younger fans. In 2011, he produced what would be voted the FIFA Goal of the Year and led Santos to its first Copa Libertadores championship in 48 years. Neymar scored his 100 th professional goal on his 20th birthday in 2012 and finished the year with a career-best total of 43. Although Santos won its third straight league title, the young star again was subject to criticism when Brazil lost the 2012 Summer Olympics gold-medal game to an underdog Mexico team.