A break from Premier League 1-11s as we return to another series, charting the way numbering systems came to be common in various parts of the world.
Similar to their albiceleste neighbours, Brazil generally have 2, 3, 4 and 6 in defence, but in a different format. Basically, they did the opposite to Argentina when dropping a player back as the 2-3-5 formation evolved into the W-M, withdrawing 6 rather than 4:
Then, as they invented what would become known as the 4-2-4, number 4 became a centre-back alongside 3 with 5 remaining in midfield, as would become the practice all over the continent.
Then, again mirroring what Argentina did, 11 remained as the second striker with 9 while 7 dropped back, giving us what is today known as the 4-2-2-2. Incidentally, over time 3 and 4 have become interchangeable – for example at the World Cup in 2014 Lucio was the right-sided centre-back wearing 3 with David Luiz carrying 4 on the left.