Thanks to an eight-game winning streak in World Cup qualifying, the Selecao sit atop the standings in South America, a whopping nine points ahead of second-placed Colombia. Qualification to Russia has already been clinched.
"Tite is doing a great job for the Brazilian national team," Kaka said in an exclusive interview with ESPN FC. "I think Brazil will arrive in a good position for the next World Cup, will probably be one of the favorites to win the next one. I'm very happy for them."
Brazil have come a long way in the past two years. The hangover from the humiliating 7-1 defeat at the hands of Germany in the 2014 World Cup semifinals lingered. Brazil was eliminated in the quarterfinals of the 2015 Copa America, losing on penalties to Paraguay. World Cup qualifying started no better, as Brazil found itself in sixth place, outside of even a playoff place, level on points with Paraguay after six matches.
Then came the embarrassment of being eliminated in the group stage of the Copa America Centenario. The cumulative results cost Dunga his job as Brazil manager, with Tite taking his place.