Thursday, 3 March 2011

Menezes Names Squad for Scotland Friendly

Mano Menezes today announced the Brazil squad ahead of the the friendly with Scotland, which will take place at Arsenal's Emirates Stadium on March 27th.

The full seleção is as follows;

Júlio César (Internazionale)
Jefferson (Botafogo)
Victor (Grêmio)

Daniel Alves (Barcelona)
Maicon (Internazionale)
André Santos (Fenerbahçe)
Marcelo (Real Madrid)
Thiago Silva (Milan)
David Luiz (Chelsea)
Lúcio (Internazionale)
Luisão (Benfica)

Sandro (Tottenham Hotspur)
Lucas (Liverpool)
Ramires (Chelsea)
Henrique (Cruzeiro)
Elias (Atlético Madrid)
Renato Augusto (Bayer Leverkusen)
Jádson (Shakhtar Donetsk)
Lucas (São Paulo)
Elano (Santos)

Neymar (Santos)
Alexandre Pato (Milan)
Nilmar (Villarreal)
Jonas (Valencia)

Slowly but surely, the old guard are shuffling their way back in from the cold; Lúcio, Maicon, and Elano return to the squad for the first time since Brazil's World Cup disappointment. The former pair have benefitted from the man management of countryman Leonardo at Internazionale, whilst Elano has been in electric form since returning to Santos. Rafael, Breno, and Anderson all drop out to make room.

First call-up; Cruzeiro midfielder Henrique.

Valencia new boy Jonas, the top-scorer in last season's Brasileirão with Grêmio, earns his first call-up, as does Henrique, a consistently impressive performer for Cruzeiro. Perhaps more exciting, however, is the selection of Lucas, the São Paulo attacking midfielder who has shot to stardom in recent months. The 18-year-old, who impressed for Brazil's U20 side in the South American Youth Championship, will hope to take the step up to the senior side in his stride.

In midfield, there are further chances for Jádson and Renato Augusto, and Menezes favourites Elias, Lucas, Ramires, and Sandro all retain their places. Lazio midfielder Hernanes, who was sent off against France, misses out this time, as does Hulk; I, for what it's worth, would certainly have selected that particular pair. Other players to miss out are André (who recently joined Bordeaux on loan from Dynamo Kyiv) and Robinho, who, according to Menezes, will benefit from a rest.

SKP will be in attendance at the Emirates, so allow me to suggest my preferred starting XI (in Menezes' preferred 4-2-1-3 formation) from the above 24 (I hope you're reading this, Mano!): Júlio César; Daniel Alves, Thiago Silva, David Luiz, André Santos; Lucas, Elano; Lucas; Nilmar, Pato, Neymar. Ridiculously attacking, but come on, it's Brazil! (And perhaps more pertinently, it's Scotland.*) Stay tuned for my match report later this month.

* This is a JOKE.

(Photo credit; Beto Oliveira.)

4 comments:

  1. Not a bad call-up by any means, but some of the names annoyed me a little bit. Well, I guess there's a good and a bad side for everything.

    Good:
    Victor and Jefferson. Great goalkeepers who surely deserve a chance. Henrique is not outstanding but I've seen him in the flesh three times and he didn't disappoint. Like you said, consistent as hell, good in keeping possession and very capable in defense - neutralized Verón this month. Nilmar coming back is great as well. And Jonas surely deserves it more than the damn Hulk.

    Bad:
    Luisão? Really? Jeez, Mano, he's like 32 and never was good enough to be a starter anyway. Time to call younger players like Breno, Miranda, Alex Silva and Rafael Tolói. As for Lúcio, I would prefer not to have him anymore. He's played 3 World Cups, he's done his job. He's still amazing, but we have two of the world's best CBs in Thiago Silva and David Luiz, who will be at the top of their game in 2014 and must be given some experience. I'm fine with Maicon, as long as he's still banging, but I'd prefer to have Rafael. And Elano? Jeez, I had enough of him with Dunga. Mano's philosophy seems to be completely different in terms of playing style and that doesn't suit Elano at all. And I'm not so sure about Jádson and Renato Augusto. Renato Augusto in particular looked poor against France.


    I expect a 4-2-3-1 with (Júlio César; Daniel Alves, Thiago Silva, David Luiz, André Santos; Lucas Leiva, Ramires; Renato Augusto, Lucas, Neymar; Pato), or Elias - maybe Nilmar - replacing Lucas.

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  2. Thanks for your comment, Mario.

    I couldn't agree more about Luisão...he's not going to be there in 2014, it's be far better to give that spot to someone else. Lúcio can perhaps be justified in that his presence might benefit David Luiz and Thiago Silva...but I don't foresee him playing in the World Cup either.

    I quite like Jádson actually, although I think he's only going to be a squad player. Renato Augusto certainly needs to improve on his last outing, I agree.

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  3. But I think this selection is more about the Copa America than the world cup. I have a feeling Luisao, Lucio etc, and even Maicon will be dropped out right after copa america.

    Even though the whole talk is about 2014, if you are a Brazil coach, you have to win copa america. Period. Otherwise, your job will be on the line.

    I think right now Menezes is thinking about winning the copa america on Argentina soil. Nothing boosts confidence than that. So overall I agree with the inclusion of the older folks.

    Copa America, especially when it is held on Aegentina soil, is an important title. It is not a warm up to the world cup. He has another three years and the confederation cup to prepare for 2014.

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  4. A very good point. Menezes, for all his faith in youth and the attacking optimism of his early games, is seeing the Copa America on the horizon!

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