England 2-1 Brazil: Fred strikes but Seleção crumble to defeat
A lacklustre Seleção crumbled to a 2-1 defeat at the hands of England in Luiz Felipe Scolari's first game since his comeback.
A superb strike from Fred wasn't enough for the away side as Wayne Rooney and Frank Lampard goals secured the win for the hosts.
After Gary Cahill and Joe Hart denied Neymar in two early chances, the first big chance of the game fell to England.
A superb save by QPR's Júlio César brilliantly denied Rooney as the Manchester United man looked to have put England into the lead with a header.
At the other end, a penalty was given for handball against Jack Wilshere, a harsh decision according to TV replays, but Joe Hart stopped Ronaldinho's effort and Tom Cleverley brilliantly denied Neymar's follow up.
Just minutes later, England tore apart the Brazil defence with Rooney at the heart of the attack, releasing Danny Welbeck with a threaded pass but the striker could only toepoke a shot over the bar.
The breakthrough finally came through Rooney as the Manchester United striker tucked away the rebound from Walcott's original effort for his 33rd international goal after a superb Wilshere pass split open the away side's defence.
England very nearly added a second a minute later as Walcott danced his way through the middle but César beat Rooney to the resulting pass.
Brazil still posed a threat on the counterattack however, and Neymar latched onto Oscar's whipped cross only to turn the shot over the bar with the goal gaping.
Earning his 100th cap for Brazil, Ronaldinho struggled to impose himself on the play as England's midfield trio of Gerrard, Cleverley and Wilshere were overrunning the Brazilian duo of Paulinho and Ramires.
The Seleção defenders were also having trouble dealing with Walcott's pace as another through ball, this time from Welbeck, released the Arsenal man but his effort was easily parried by César.
After the break, Scolari rang the changes as Luís Fabiano made way for Fred, Arouca for Ramires and Lucas Moura replaced the ineffectual Ronaldinho.
England threatened yet again as César spilled a longe range effort from Gerrard into Wilshere's path but the Brazil defenders scrambled to clear the ball.
Despite the England pressure, it was Brazil who equalised as Fluminense's Fred thundered home from the edge of the box after Cahill was caught in possession at the back.
Fred very nearly doubled his tally after the restart as he hit the bar after yet more slack England defending, this time from Hart.
César was on hand again to deny a Cahill header from Gerrard's whipped delivery and had to be on his toes again to deny Welbeck as he looked to tuck away Walcott's cross.
England kept up the pressure and got their reward as Lampard curled in a superb volley in off the post past the flailing César to restore the home side's lead.
The Three Lions were also denied a penalty after Walcott went down under pressure from Adriano as they looked to press their advantage.
Sensing Brazil's frustrations, Hodgson reshuffled his midfield to protect their lead by introducing the industrious James Milner for Welbeck and utilising the pace of Walcott on the counterattack.
Walcott eventually made way for Tottenham's Aaron Lennon, leaving to a round of applause and relieved looks from the Seleção defenders.
Brazil still found room for one last effort in injury time as Oscar dragged an effort inches past the post but it was all in vain as the Three Lions held on for their first win over the Seleção since 1990.
Brazil: César, D. Alves, D. Luiz, Dante, Adriano, Ramires, Paulinho, Oscar, Ronaldinho. Neymar, L. Fabiano.
England: Hart, Johnson, Smalling, Cahill, Cole, Gerrard, Wilshere, Cleverley, Walcott, Welbeck, Rooney.