When the coach BrazilTite, pronounced the name of the veteran Dani Alves in his call for the selection world cup , reactions across the country ranged from anger to disappointment. The coach of Brazil, who has faced little criticism in his six years in office, described his choice in a slow and not-so-confident tone. “The criteria for Daniel Alves is the criteria for everyone,” Tite said. “It is about rewarding individual ability, his physical form and the mental aspect of him. Just like everyone else.
Alves himself, however, acknowledged that many did not want him in the Qatar squad. “I’m not here to please everyone,” he said in a video.
The rancor has nothing to do with the right-back’s glittering past, but the presence of a 39-year-old who has struggled to play for any club in the last year exposed his lack of options. Brazil on both flanks of the defense. .
Tite’s most likely options to start at the World Cup are right-back Danilo, who has become more of a central defender at Juventus, and Alex Sandro, a player with little experience as the typical Brazilian box-running left-back. in area.
Neither Danilo nor Alex Sandro are considered two of the best in the world in their positions, as were their predecessors Cafú, Roberto Carlos, Marcelo and Alves peak 10 years ago. At the same time, the duo hasn’t caused many defensive problems for Brazilbeing part of a team that conceded only five goals in the South American qualification.
Alves and Alex Telles are expected to be on the bench in Qatar, with Eder Militão also capable of playing at right-back and midfielder Fabinho at left-back.
“They’re fine,” former Brazilian left-back Junior, now a television commentator, said this month of Tite’s options. “They are not players who will be up all the time. They are more cautious. But I don’t see any other option that is better to start at this time.”
Over the past year, Tite has lost two other options that could have helped.
Fagner, a 33-year-old right-back who replaced the injured Alves four years ago in Russia, had a poor season at Corinthians. Former Sevilla left-back Guilherme Arana suffered a knee injury in September that ruled him out of the World Cup.
The coach of Brazil he also found little reason to bring back Renan Lodi, who was loaned out to Nottingham Forest after struggling at Atlético Madrid.
Lodi was blamed for the defeat of Brazil 1-0 against Argentina in the 2021 Copa América final, and striker Ángel di Maria said he knew the Brazilian “slept a bit” during matches. The left-back found no sympathy from Tite after he missed a call-up earlier in the year because he was not vaccinated against COVID-19.
The right side of Brazil at the World Cup, whoever he is, he could also face increased pressure playing alongside 38-year-old defender Thiago Silva.
Silva has been less consistent than usual at Chelsea, highlighted by a dismal performance in the 4-1 loss to Brighton in the Premier League last month. A right-back who can also run for an aging Silva could be key to avoiding conceding goals in Qatar.
Cafu, who was in the team of Brazil who won the World Cup in 2002, said protecting Silva is one of the reasons Tite will eventually use Militão as a starting right-back during the World Cup. He is also confident that Brazil will do well in Qatar, regardless of the lack of options at the back.
“I don’t know why we have this shortage of players for those positions. But it’s not just for the national team, we also see it in the clubs,” Cafú said in an interview last month. “The coaches are adapting the midfielders for that position because they don’t know how to work specifically with the right and left backs.
“Also, it is unfair to compare these players with us. Anyone who plays right or left back today has a huge responsibility. They have to replace the people who made history in Brazil”.