The 2013 Confederations Cup gets underway with host country and Group A favorite Brazil taking on Japan. Both sides are already locked into next year's World Cup, Brazil as the host and Japan through qualification, so the tournament is good preparation.
Brazil is under immense pressure to showcase improved form after dropping to No. 22 in the most recen The Selecao must start turning things around over the next couple weeks and also build some confidence heading toward next summer.
The Samurai Blue find themselves in a very difficult group, which also features Italy and Mexico. Making it through to the knockout stages would be a terrific accomplishment. Regardless of the result, it's a good measuring stick with the World Cup looming.