The Corinthians side that will feature in the Club World Cup in Tokyo on Wednesday has the ammunition to ambush European champions Chelsea if the two teams get through to Sunday’s final as expected.
The Brazilians won South America’s version of the Champions League at a relative canter in July, going unbeaten for 14 Libertadores Cup games and conceding just four goals.
While Chelsea have just hired Rafael Benitez on an interim basis, the London club’s third coach in nine months, Corinthians are a relative ocean of stability.
The Brazilians are treating the Club World Cup seriously, with an estimated 15,000 fans seeing them off at the airport last week and a similar number likely to travel to roar on their side in Japan.
If Corinthians win the competition it will be the 10th time a Brazilian side has lifted the trophy since it was first played in 1960.