The most successful nation in World Cup history, it's easy to see why Brazil are among the favourites heading into this summers International Legends World Cup. Victorious in 1958, 1962, 1970, 1994 and 2002, Brazil have had generation after generation of world class footballing talent.
Brazil is the only nation to have featured in every single World Cup tournament, and the Pentacampeoes have the best record in World Cup competitions in terms of games won, goals scored and points won. Trimming it down to a squad of 15 with just 8 reserves was no mean feat then, and some true greats of the game have sadly missed out. Below is Brazil's definite squad of 15, plus their 8 reserves, from which you choose which 3 should make the final cut.
Here is Brazil's squad for the International Legends World Cup
If there is a position in which Brazil haven't been blessed by the footballing gods, it is in goal and at centre-back. Perhaps the safest pair of hands the South Americans have had is Gilmar. Capped 94 times for his country between 1953 and 1969, Gilmar averaged less than a goal a game conceded, and was number one for three World Cups, of which Brazil won two. At club level, he represented Corinthians and Santos.
A hugely popular figure in Brazil, Claudio Taffarel has 17 children, 15 of them having been adopted by the retired goalkeeper. The 51-year-old played in the top flights of Italy, Turkey and Brazil, and won 101 caps for his country, the highlight of which being their triumph at the 1994 World Cup.
Brazilian legends Zito and Djalma Santos
It would not be an exaggeration to say that Brazil have had the three greatest right-backs of all-time in Djalma Santos, Carlos Alberto and Cafu. That, twinned with the fact the country has fared rather less impressively at centre-back, means all three make the cut. Santos is the pick of the bunch; he played in three World Cup's for Brazil, winning two and being named in the All-Star XI on every occasion.
Carlos Alberto Torres
A man who could stake a good claim to be the captain of Brazil's International Legends World Cup squad, Carlos Alberto Torres was nicknamed, 'O Capitão do Tri' in Brazil. The captain of Brazil's great 1970 World Cup winning side, Alberto also finished off their fourth and final goal in the tournament's final against Italy, considered one of the greatest goals in the sports history. He spent most of his club career at Santos.
Domingos Da Guia
The only team in the International Legends World Cup to name just one centre-back in their initial squad of 15, he is at least a world class one. Domingos Da Guia won 30 caps for Brazil between 1931 and 1946, a classy centre-back widely regarded as the finest in the nation's history. He was named in the 1938 World Cup All-Star Team.
Former Brazil full-back Cafu
The last of Brazil's three great right-back's, Cafu is the most capped Brazilian footballer of all-time. He made 142 appearances for his country between 1990 and 2006, winning two World Cup's and playing in three finals. At club level, Cafu was superb for both Roma and AC Milan. Renowned for his exceptional stamina and tireless running, Sir Alex Ferguson once jokingly queried as to whether the full-back had two hearts.
Brazil's history of left-back's may not be able to rival their illustrious list of right-back's, but it's not far off. Roberto Carlos may not have been the greatest defender, but he was perfect for a very attacking Brazilian national team between 1992 and 2006. Fondly remembered for his terrific left foot, Carlos spent most of his career with Real Madrid.
Moving onto the midfield, and we start with arguably the finest wide player of all-time. Nicknamed the 'Joy of the People', Garrincha was a wizard with the ball at his feet, and when he was firing, there was little the opposition could do. Off the pitch, he was a troubled figure, a heavy drinker and involved in multiple road accidents. He died at the age of 49 with his final years being a sad end to the life of a footballing hero.
Ronaldinho was magnificent for Brazil and Barcelona
The plethora of midfield talent, especially attacking or wide midfielders, means the Brazil squad is overflowing with skill, flair and footballing genius. At his best, Ronaldinho was a joy to watch. Like Garrincha, he played football with a childish enjoyment and smile. Ronaldinho played his best football for Barcelona, and won 97 caps for Brazil, winning the World Cup in 2002 and the Ballon d'Or in 2005.
The white Pele, as he was known, Zico was another artist with the ball at his feet. Named the eighth greatest player of the century by FIFA Player of the Century vote, Zico won 71 caps for Brazil, scoring 52 goals, an incredible record for a midfield player. Zico's best years at club level came with Flamengo, before brief stints with Udinese in Italy and Kashima Antlers in Japan.
The natural heir to Garrincha, just how Jairzinho compares to the the man who was 11 years his senior is up for debate, but few could doubt Jairzinho was a world class player in his own right. A Botafogo legend, Jairzinho won 81 caps for Brazil, featuring in three World Cups. The best of these was the 1970 World Cup, in which Jairzinho became only the second player in history to score in ever single one of his countries World Cup matches.
In amongst all the flair and artistry, Brazil are going to need a midfield linchpin, and whilst Didi was as gifted as almost anyone and capable of playing as an inside-forward, he could also operate as an extraordinary box-to-box midfielder and provide the engine room for this team. Didi won 68 caps for Brazil, playing in three World Cups and winning two.
Pele celebrates scoring for Brazil in the 1970 World Cup final
Moving onto the forwards and Pele is naturally the first name in the starting XI. The greatest of all the great players Brazil have had over the years, Pele won 92 caps and scored 77 goals for Brazil. Pele almost spent his entire career with Santos, before coming out of retirement for a couple of seasons with New York Cosmos. Between 1958 and 1965, Pele was probably the best player on the planet.
Injuries have prevented Ronaldo from being held in the same regard as Pele, but in terms of ability, he was as good as just about anyone. He could beat players at ease, glide with the ball at his feet and score goals for fun. He was the youngest member of Brazil's 1994 World Cup winning squad, aged 17, and went on to play a key role in the 1998 and 2002 tournaments. Ronaldo won two Ballon d'Ors and trails only Pele in Brazilian scoring charts. At club level, he graced Cruzeiro, PSV, Barcelona, Inter Milan, Real Madrid, AC Milan and Corinthians.
A front three of Pele, Ronaldo and Romario is quite remarkable, but that is the strike force Brazil will take to this summers International Legends World Cup. Romario is one of the most prolific forwards of all-time, and had he not missed out on the 1998 and 2002 World Cups, he may be held in even higher regard. He won the Golden Ball at the 1994 World Cup, winning the World Player of the Year award the same year, and played his best club football for PSV and Barcelona.
Legendary midfielder Socrates in among Brazil's 8 reserves
That's it for Brazil's definite 15, now it's over to you to pick which three reserve players get the nod and join the likes of Pele and Ronaldinho in Brazil's final 18 for the International Legends World Cup. The eight reserve players to choose from are as follows:
1. Dida - Former Cruzeiro and AC Milan goalkeeper - 91 caps
2. Nilton Santos - Former Botafogo full-back - 75 caps
3. Lucio - Former Bayern Munich and Inter Milan centre-back - 105 caps
4. Falcao - Former Internacional and Roma midfielder - 34 caps
5. Socrates - Former Botafogo and Corinthians midfielder - 60 caps
6. Gerson - Former Flamengo and Botafogo midfielder - 70 caps
7. Neymar - Current FC Barcelona forward - 77 caps*
8. Leonidas - Former Flamengo and Sao Paulo - 19 caps
You can vote here on which reserve you feel should make the final squad. The three players with the most votes will make the cut: