Brazil's press prevents Japan from countering

Brazil cruised to a 3-0 win over Japan in the opening game of the Confederations Cup in Brasilia. Neymar opened the scoring just 3 minutes in with a sensational volley from a Fred knockdown. Paulinho secured the 3 points early on the second half with Brazil's second and Oscar teed up Jo for a third with the last kick of the game.

Unsurprisingly, Japan were set up to counter defending with two banks of four then looking to play outlet passes in behind the Brazil midfield to spark counters. The most impressive aspect of Brazil's performance was their ability to immediately press the ball when they lost possession high up the pitch and break up counters before they even started.

In possession Brazil's two fullbacks Marcelo and Dani Alves would push forward to provide width. Luis Gustavo would drop in between center backs David Luiz and Thiago Silva to form a back three, similar to the way Sergio Busquets plays at Barcelona. Had Japan been able to find quick outlet passes in behind the Brazil midfield, Brazil's center backs and Luis Gustavo would have been stretched at the back. However, the attacking midfielders and fullbacks did a fantastic job closing down the ball and making tactical fouls when necessary to prevent the counter attack.

On the rare occasions Brazil Japan were able to break quickly in behind the Brazil midfield, Thiago Silva and David Luiz were able to use their quickness and athleticism to slow them down. Brazil will get numbers forward and play high up the pitch so the athleticism of their center backs will be crucial in ensuring the opposition doesn't get in behind them on the break.