You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘Kaka’ tag.

FelipaoLuiz Felipe Scolari just announced his squad for next month’s Confederations Cup and it’s characterized by brave choices and an onus on youth.

Both Ronaldinho and Kaka have been left out, with the former omission particularly surprising given that he has been in sparkling form with his club Atletico Mineiro.

I think he’s right to leave him out because Ronaldinho has failed to show not just his club form in a yellow jersey, but also failed to show the same appetite for the game. However, if Brazil don’t do well, the screams for his return will become deafening.

The big surprise is the inclusion of Bernard, another Atletico Mineiro player. The tiny attacking midfielder has been one of the stars of Atletico’s Libertadores campaign.

I think his inclusion is as much about preparing him for the World Cup than it is about the Confederations competition. Felipao pointedly stated that he wants to give Bernard the experience of a big tournament before next year.

Lucas, now of Paris Saint-Germain, and Chelsea’s Oscar, are two other youngsters called up.

Among the other brave decisions are the exclusion of Ramires, which I think is a mistake, and the inclusion of Leandro Damiao. The internacional striker has lost some of his gloss recently but Felipao likes an old style No. 9 and Leandro Damiao fits that bill.

Brazil still look weak at the full back positions, especially if Marcelo and Daniel Alves get injured. I don’t rate either of them too highly and Marcelo is always liable to lose the rag.

Brazil play England in a friendly at the Maracana on June 2 and then face France in Porto Alegre a week later. The Confederations Cup kicks off on June 15.

The full squad, from the CBF home page:

Goleiros

Julio Cesar – Queens P. Rangers

Diego Cavlaieri – Fluminense

Jefferson – Botafogo

 

Zagueiros

Thiago Silva – Paris Saint Germain

Rever – Atlético Mineiro

David Luiz – Chelsea

Dante – Bayern de Munique

 

Laterais

Daniel Alves – Barcelona

Jean – Fluminense

Marcelo – Real Madrid

Filipe Luís – Atlético de Madrid

 

Meio-campo

Fernando – Grêmio

Hernanes – Lazio

Luiz Gustavo – Bayern de Munique

Paulinho – Corinthians

 

Meia atacantes/atacantes

Jadson – São Paulo

Oscar – Chelsea

Lucas – Paris Saint Germain

Hulk – Zenit

Bernard – Atlético Mineiro

Leandro Damião – Internacional

Fred – Fluminense

Neymar – Santos

Advertisements

Brazil manager Luiz Felipe Scolari has just announced the squad for the Brazil vs. England match at Wembley on Feb. 6.

It is the first squad of his new reign and there were, as expected, a few surprises.

I think he’s right in recalling QPR goalie Julio Cesar and Lazio midfielder Hernanes who, I read the other day, has scored more goals than any other Brazilian playing in Europe this season.

But I can’t really see the point of recalling Ronaldinho. Talented he may be but he is lazy, and more of a problem off the field than a solution on it.

Fred deserves a chance given his scoring record but he may be getting on a bit for 2014.

Recalling Luis Fabiano, however, makes little sense. The hot headed Sao Paulo striker is just as likely to get sent off as score a hat trick and in the pressure cooker situation of a World Cup on home soil you can’t risk those kind of players.

I was also surprised to see Kaka missing, as he was superb in his last few games for Mano Menezes.

Here’s the Reuters story with more details. Link is here.

RIO DE JANEIRO, Jan 22 (Reuters) – Ronaldinho and goalkeeper Julio Cesar were both recalled by Brazil as new coach Luiz Felipe Scolari named his first squad on Tuesday.

Scolari, who led Brazil to their 2002 World Cup title and returned for a second stint in November, also left out Kaka and gave another chance to striker Luis Fabiano for the friendly against England next month.

Lazio midfielder Hernanes, another player overlooked by previous coach Mano Menezes, was also included for the match at Wembley on Feb 6.

Scolari has less than 18 months to build a team capable of winning a sixth world title for Brazil on home soil.

Goalkeepers: Julio Cesar (Queens Park Rangers), Diego Alves (Valencia)

Defenders: Daniel Alves (Barcelona), Adriano (Barcelona), David Luiz (Chelsea), Dante (Bayern Munich), Leandro Castan (AS Roma), Miranda (Atletico Madrid), Filipe Luis (Atletico Madrid)

Midfielders: Ramires (Chelsea), Arouca (Santos), Paulinho (Corinthians), Hernanes (Lazio), Oscar (Chelsea), Ronaldinho (Atletico Mineiro)

Forwards: Hulk (Zenit St Petersburg), Neymar (Santos), Lucas (Paris St Germain), Fred (Fluminense), Luis Fabiano (Sao Paulo)

Socrates, in 1986

A few years ago, Time magazine had me call Socrates to ask him if he would pen a short piece on Kaka.

The magazine’s editors – perhaps the same ones who suggested last month that Lionel Messi was better than Pele – had chosen Kaka as one of the 100 most influential people on the planet and they wanted Socrates to write an eulogy.

Socrates had one question for me. Is this about Kaka the footballer or Kaka the man, he asked. Kaka, the man, I replied.

To my delight, Socrates dismissed the idea out of hand. He had great respect for Kaka with a ball at his feet but not with a bible in his hand.

Time got Casey Keller to write the piece instead.

I thought of this last night when I saw that Neymar had described Ricardo Teixeira as “an excellent president” of the CBF. The young Santos star made the comments on the same day that Edmundo declared that he “loved” Ricardo Teixeira and a few days after Ronaldo and Bebeto both lauded Teixeira’s work.

(See the Neymar comments in Portuguese here, and details of Ronaldo and Bebeto’s nonsense here in my Reuters piece from last week.)

Socrates was not just a brilliant footballer. He was an intelligent and highly  principled man who fought hard so that players like Neymar could have more of a voice, both inside and outside the game.

He must be rolling in his grave.

My Tweets