Oscar: Nothing less than trophy will do
Brazil midfielder Oscar believes winning the World Cup is the only acceptable outcome for the host nation and urged his teammates not to be burdened by the pressure of the task at hand.
The majority of competing nations would be content with a run to the latter stages of the World Cup, but Oscar admitted the bar of success is higher for Brazil than any other country.
"We all realise that we'll only be as good as past generations if we're able to win as past generations did," the Chelsea star states in a new book entitled "Oscar's Brazil."
"What's important is to recognise our responsibilities and take them seriously as players, but not to let the pressure inhibit us. When the whistle blows for kick-off, we have to make sure we let the joy in our football come through.
"If we do that, we know we'll have 200 million Brazilians on our side, cheering us on. We have to be true to ourselves and true to our football ideals and not let the scale of the event, the importance of a World Cup in Brazil, stop us playing the way we all want football to be played."
Oscar believes a World Cup on home soil is all the more special as it will offer the Brazilian public a rare opportunity to see their heroes performing back home.
"So many Brazilian players now play overseas and it will make a World Cup back at home even more special," he said. "I've been playing in London, with Chelsea, for two years but I know what it feels like to play in front of Brazilian fans, a Brazilian crowd. All of us are the same: we're passionate about our country.
"Whenever we have a holiday, we go home to Brazil, home to our families and our friends. So now, to have a World Cup there? That will be a very special kind of homecoming indeed.
"As you grow up, you dream about playing for a big club or playing in Europe, but the first dream and the one that lasts? That's to play for Brazil. I'd say that's true for every Brazilian boy. I know that to play for the national team was always my dream.
"I don't know who's going to be the most excited; the players, the fans? Everyone will be together, feeling the same. Big emotions, excitement, euphoria, pride -- and, we hope, joy. We know the whole of Brazil will be behind us, willing us to succeed. Perhaps we don't have the star players that previous generations have had, but we have unity."