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Brazil job will test Menezes' inner calm

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Tim Vickery | 08:46 UK time, Sunday, 25 July 2010

When Brazil shine, the players get the credit for their flair and brilliance. When they fall short of expectations, the coach gets the blame.

Being in charge of Brazilian team is like sitting in a coconut shy - plenty of things are thrown in your direction. And the bombardment could be especially fierce in the case of new boss Mano Menezes, who is taking over with everyone knowing that he was not the first choice for the job.

Muricy Ramalho, currently in charge of Fluminense, was the preferred candidate of the CBF - the Brazilian FA - and a man who, after guiding Sao Paulo to three consecutive league titles from 2006-08 he gave an interview in which he described the notion of turning down the Brazil job as "a joke".

And yet, he has done exactly that, leaving the CBF looking stupid and lapping up criticism from the local media.

On Saturday, sports daily Lance! put an editorial on its front page describing the farce with Ramalho as an example of "the amateurism and improvisation of the actions of the CBF and its directors with things of real importance to our football. Attitudes for which we have already paid a high price, with the loss of titles and of chances to organise our domestic football. And which have transformed the organisation of the 2014 World Cup into a blind flight to an uncertain destination".

Mano Menezes and Roberto RivelinoNew Brazil coach Mano Menezes (left) shares a joke with 1970 World Cup star Roberto Rivelino - photo: AP

The problem was that Fluminense would not free Ramalho from his contract. Indeed, it does seem an extraordinary oversight from the CBF not to have checked this before announcing that he was by far the best man to take them forward.

But Ramalho could have walked. A compensation claim could have been negotiated. It would be naïve to expect such loyalty to run both ways. If Fluminense have a run of bad results, they are liable to sack Ramalho without a minute's thought - they have done it to plenty of others.

Ramalho has said that contracts should be honoured, and that he needs to give an example to his children by sticking to his agreement with Fluminense. It sounds like an attempt to claim the moral high ground, but I wonder if his refusal has been chiefly motivated by the pragmatism that has always been the hallmark of his teams. Perhaps he was afraid that whoever takes over now might prove to be a fall guy.

As soon as Dunga was sacked following Brazil's quarter-final exit from the World Cup, CBF president Ricardo Teixeira talked of the need for renewal.

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Brazil took an old squad to South Africa and few of them will be around in 2014, so there is a big rebuilding job to be done. The new coach may take charge of the Under-20s and will certainly, assuming Brazil qualify, lead the Under-23s at the London Olympics.

He will also be expected to throw plenty of youngsters straight into the senior side, starting with next month's friendly away to the USA.

The obvious risk is that results might suffer while an inexperienced team finds its feet. That is what happened some 20 years ago when the great midfielder Falcao took charge of Brazil after the 1990 World Cup with a similar rebuilding brief. Before long, he had lost his job.

The shadow of Luiz Felipe Scolari hangs over the new coach. He remains the overwhelming peoples' choice and even former captain Socrates appears to have been seduced by the charisma of a man who sees the world from a very different perspective.
In a recent interview on this website, Socrates pushed Scolari's claims - a fan of Fidel Castro lining up behind an admirer of General Pinochet.

But 'Big Phil' ensured that he was out of the running by agreeing to coach Palmeiras before the World Cup. He doesn't want the Brazil job now, but he would surely love to have it in two years time, in the run up to 2014.

Luiz Felipe Scolari'Big Phil' Scolari guided Brazil to World Cup glory in 2002 and may fancy trying to do so again in 2014 - photo: Getty

So, Mano Menezes has accepted the challenge and the CBF website has paid tribute to his courage in doing so. A (very) lower division centre-back in his playing days, he coached a number of minor sides before hitting the big time in the last five years with Gremio and Corinthians.

He picked both up after relegation to the Second Division, took them back up and reinstalled them among the giants, leading Gremio to the final of the 2007 Copa Libertadores and winning last year's Brazilian Cup with Corinthians.

Menezes is no out-and-out-romantic - there is little space for such figures in contemporary Brazilian football. Like Scolari and Dunga, he is from the south of Brazil, a region where mass European immigration has left its mark with a preference for a tough style of play. But there are promising signs in his nurturing of all-round midfielders, an area where Brazil badly need a rethink.

Lucas developed well under him at Gremio and Cristian and Elias have caught the eye with Corinthians. He is also a believer in pacy wide attackers, Carlos Eduardo with Gremio, Dentinho and Jorge Henrique with Corinthians. His Brazil are unlikely to be totally dependent on the full-backs for penetration down the flanks.

With his cropped hair and pale skin, Menezes has the appearance of a US marine. But there is clearly more to him than a sergeant-major figure. He is held in affection by his players - as shown at Saturday's press conference when Ronaldo, Roberto Carlos and others briefly invaded the show to give their congratulations.

Mano Menezes is known for his cool demeanour, he is unlikely to be seen knocking nine bells out of the dugout, as Dunga did during that quarter final defeat by the Netherlands.

But he takes charge of Brazil at an awkward time and that inner calm will be thoroughly tested over the next few years.

Comments on the piece in the space provided. Questions on South American football to vickerycolumn@hotmail.com and I'll pick out a couple for next week.

From last week's postbag:

Q) Do you thing Peru stand a chance of qualifying for a World Cup again soon?
Krister Wendelborg

It's been a while. They haven't made it since '82, and though they were close in '86 and '98, they've been miles away since, but I'm certainly expecting some improvement in the next campaign. Over the last couple of years there have been some promising signs from Peruvian clubs in the Libertadores.

I'm also a big fan of Sergio Markarian, the Uruguayan who has just been brought in to coach the national team - a very serious figure. But this next set of qualifiers will be extremely competitive, and I wonder if there's enough genuine quality available to pick up points away from home.

Q) As a Benfica fan I would like to know your opinion on our new signing Nicolas Gaitan from Argentina. He is replacing fellow Argentinean Angel di Maria who is going to Real Madrid. Do you think Gaitan has the qualities to be a major player in the Liga Portugal and the Champions League?
Marco Sody

A) Although Gaitan is also left footed, they are very different players. Di Maria is a flyer. Gaitan came through the ranks more as an artistic foot-on-the-ball midfielder, though Boca were also using him wide right, curling in crosses for the centre forward. Di Maria's gifts make him more naturally suited to the European game. I hope Gaitan comes off, but I'll be surprised if he makes the same impact as Di Maria.

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    Whoever is the coach of Brazil won't make any difference. Brazil does not have the players to go back to the Jogo Bonito of 1982, so we can expect more of the same we have seen so far: Strong defense and fast counterattacking game.

  • Comment number 2.

    You make a good point Phil.

    The better candidates are surely positioning themselves for the job in 2 years time. The new coach is going to have a tough time changing the stlye and personnel and get the results. Do you see a new coach coming in after 2 years with the fundamentals changed allowing the new coach to become an instant success?

  • Comment number 3.

    It'll be interesting to see how Brazil tries to rebuild their team. Even though the next world cup will be held in Brazil, they may struggle considering they will not have the advantage of playing in the South American qualifiers, and those competitive games will be missed.

    Since 1982, Brazil have relied solely on strong defense and a very good counterattacking game, and of course, on the outstanding individualities such as Romario and Ronaldo to win trophies. These days, however, the individualities seem to be missing and unless they can find one within the next 4 years, they'll be another strong but ultimately ordinary team, like the one we saw in South Africa.

    Furthermore, there are some other very strong squads coming up, with young players hungry for success such as Uruguay, Chile, Germany, not counting the current champions Spain and if they manage to fix their defensive problems, Argentina.

  • Comment number 4.

    Anyone would be a better manager than Dunga - he just didn't understand or have a clue about the football culture in his own country!! The way he made them play was absolute disgrace, the man simply took away all the skill factors and enjoyment associated with Brazil. He wanted to create a team based on the worst part of European team, win at any cost and parking 11 buses behind the ball, rather than utilising what his country known for!!

    Dunga, I really hope you watched the artisan and the beauty of Spain, as that's what people expect of your country!! They also showed that you can play pure, imaginative, beautiful, artistic and wonderful football!!

    I thought the 2002 team was wonderful to watch, maybe not as good as 82, but still a joy to watch. Watching Ronaldo, Rivaldo, Ronaldinho, Cafu, Roberto Carlos, was mouth watering!!

  • Comment number 5.

    Educatioal, Tim.
    I always learn something new from your blogs. How significant has the physical aspect of the playing style of the southern clubs been over the years (from the perspective of the success/failure of the national team)?

    Also, in reply to one of the earlier posts asserting that not having to qualify for the finals could be a disadvantage:
    History generally contradicts that view. Look back at how often the host nation has either won the cup, or "outperformed" expectations. I think I read somewhere else that South Africa was the first home-nation NOT to do so (depending on whose expectations are reported, of course!)

    I would accept that the expections put on Brazil are nothing less than outright victory, but they've been living with that for many years.

  • Comment number 6.

    4. At 12:15pm on 25 Jul 2010, Messi4LFC wrote:
    Anyone would be a better manager than Dunga - he just didn't understand or have a clue about the football culture in his own country!! The way he made them play was absolute disgrace, the man simply took away all the skill factors and enjoyment associated with Brazil. He wanted to create a team based on the worst part of European team, win at any cost and parking 11 buses behind the ball, rather than utilising what his country known for!!

    Dunga, I really hope you watched the artisan and the beauty of Spain, as that's what people expect of your country!! They also showed that you can play pure, imaginative, beautiful, artistic and wonderful football!!

    I thought the 2002 team was wonderful to watch, maybe not as good as 82, but still a joy to watch. Watching Ronaldo, Rivaldo, Ronaldinho, Cafu, Roberto Carlos, was mouth watering!!

    re messi4lfc: just to point out,(and im not taking the p!ss here) but an artisan is the polar opposite of an artist. maybe what you meant to post was the "artistry and beauty of spain". dungas brazil made themselves a reputation for their artisan football, being that it was purely functional and no frills.

    personally, i cannot see brazils game changing any time soon. the game in brazil has become in itself, a game of polar opposites. players like ronaldinho (i was surprised to find that he had decided to take robinho to S. Africa - more disappointed to find that he had elected not to take ronaldinho) didnt belong in dungas vision of the brazilian game. as tim has blogged time and time again, the game in brazil has become cynical and preventatory, as apposed to what used to be its natural state of free-expression. rather than continue to continue in this "discipline" and have faith in their superior technique, coaches have decided to mirror the european game in order to contain it. players like dunga himself, gilberto silva and felipe melo are examples of this new brand of football in brazil. its roots have grown deep. this i feel, is a result of the growing commercialism of the game. clubs like santos, vasco and flamengo know only too well the importance of winning all that is, so that they can continue to churn out that endless supply of stars. its a desperate struggle for survival as they know that they cannot hope for anything better than to build a team of teenage stars who they dream might win them some silverware before they sell them off to one of the big european clubs for huge fees. its a problem that those clubs cannot solve by throwing 200m euro at, like some clubs have done. its a contant state of flux as each coach knows that his greatest dream (that he discovers the next kaka or ronaldinho) is also his worst nightmare (that he will eventually have to sell him on).

    this i feel, coupled with the growing focus on containment rather than expression, has led to the pragmatist view of football that you seen brazil deliver in S. Africa.

  • Comment number 7.

    Tim, Ramalho only took the job in April and Fluminese currently sit top of the league. What impression does this give the fans and the players if he were to leave after only 3 months in charge whilst the team are playing so well. Brazil are currently not going to be playing any competitive games for around a year so it seems utterly ludicrous that Ramalho was even mentioned given his contractual commitments at the club. The same goes for Scolari. Compensation or not, 3 months into a job where you are doing well means that the CBF were going to be forced to pay vastly over the odds for something that could backfire horrendously. If they wanted him so badly, why on earth can't they just appoint an interim coach until December, wait until Ramalho finishes the season and then let him have 6 months to prepare for the Copa America? Forcing a guy to actually resign his position at a club after just 3 months, just reeks of authoritarianism.

    It seems Ramalho unlike the Brazilian FA, actually studied the risks involved. By leaving now he upsets the Flu fans and then enters into a potential lion's cage for which is most likely under-prepared for. There are far too many inadequacies and gaping holes in the Brazilian national team set-up for him to make a palpable difference straight away.

    Lastly, I would be very surprised if Mano Menezes is still in charge for the 2014 World Cup.

  • Comment number 8.

    to correct my previous statement.

    i said "no frills". upon reflection, i realise that you can never completely obliterate free expression in brazilian football. moments like maicons goal v n.korea, (see link) are proof of that. but, we the football-loving public will always expect more of brazil, the true artists of the game. and thats to say nothing of the brazilian public themselves

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WbWsEZIvjB8

  • Comment number 9.

    I agree that Menezes may not be around in 2014. My concern too is this ridiculous notion of focusing on home-based players, which Teixeira, the CBF honcho was spouting about yesterday -- and it's something Menezes has said he will focus on. This too also represents a sort of moral high ground. The "Europeans" don't know what wearing the shirt means. So let's focus on those in Brazil. Of course, the moment these guys start playing for Brazil, they'll be sold off to Europe.

    I'm going to the friendly against the USA, and based on form, I wouldnt call up guys like Neymar and Ganso. Dunga's starting line-up is still very good and honestly, I think that at least 5 players may still be starters in 2014. I do think it's great to experiment with Brazil-based players, but there are plenty of guys elsewhere who deserve a shot, even for this USA game --- like the multitude of Brazilians youngsters playing in Ukraine. But, since we won't see those guys playing, I do expect to see a team with players like Victor, Miranda, Wesley, Elias, Jucilei, Dalton, Ganso, Neymar, Andre, and Tardelli get the call-up when it's announced tomorrow.

  • Comment number 10.

    Ramalho would have been a poor choice, since he is too similar to Dunga.

    I like Menezes, he's not overly defensive like most Brazilian managers and knows how to use young talent well.

    But statistics are against him: only 4 managers managed to stay on the job for 4 years or more: Flavio Costa from 1944 to 1950 (no World Cup in the middle), Zagallo twice, and then Parreira and Dunga.

  • Comment number 11.

    Phil, I've always been utterly baffled by the South American enigma that is Peru. When you look at some of the players this country produces; Pizarro, Guerrero, Farfan, Vargas, Solano, its unthinkable that they don't even come close to qualifying for the World Cup. I know there was all the disciplinary kerfuffle around the first three players I mentioned, but why do you think Peru haven't qualified for the World Cup since 82 and what do you make of La Rojiblanca's chances of making it to the World Cup across the border in 2014?

  • Comment number 12.

    Good article this, but I believe there is a trend evolving in which people are misinterpreting Brazil.

    Dunga took over 4 years ago, won the copa america the following year and the confederations 2 years after that. They topped the qualifiers to the world cup and their so-called group of death.

    They defeated Chile and had Holland chasing at half-time. They then collapsed in 45 minutes. The expectations are huge in Brazil but let's not confuse that with Dunga's record.

    Similarly, let'e leave Menezes to do a job, who knows he could be leading his nation to glory in 4 years but some have already written him off before he's started.

    Finally, Brazil won the world cup 8 years ago with a midfield pairing of Kleberson and Gilberto Silva, hardly an all-out attacking outfit. Playing a couple of tough tacklers to create room for the flair players is not a new phenomenon.

  • Comment number 13.

    w/ brazil hosting the olympics 2 years after the world cup how much do you think they will put into winning gold in football? their wc history well documented, but i can't remember reading much about brazil's olympic footballing history...

  • Comment number 14.

    12 - some good points from the good doctor. 4 years ago few people expected dunga to last until the 2010 world cup - there were a couple of rocky moments along the way, but especially in the last 2 years results were excellent and he made it - and until his side suffered that emotional collapse in the second half against holland they were looking well on course.

    and even tele santana in 86 played with elzo and alemao in the centre of midfield.

  • Comment number 15.

    the fact the post was offered first to muricy ramalho indicates that, as far as the cbf are concerned, there is no image problem regarding the brazil team.

    he is something of a george graham figure - an elegant midfielder in his playing days who would probably not pick himself. an arch pragmatist.

  • Comment number 16.

    #12- Dunga's results weren't different from Parreira's, who at least had his team playing great football a few times, yet the latter was extremely criticized. Why Dunga should be spared, specially considering he was the one that said ONLY RESULTS MATTER, and he end up failing in the most important competition?

  • Comment number 17.

    I don't know much about the CBF but maybe they are looking to shrug off the reputation of rapid hiring and firing. They gave Dunga a shot, but I suppose Menezes is not first-choice which does put him on a more disposable front foot.

    Are there major differences in attitudes to styles of play in Brazil? Did everyone detest Dunga? I live in England so don't know but I'd guess not everyone agrees.

    Football, by its very nature, has become increasingly defensive and, some would say, monotonous. The Brazil side of 1970 will never be replicated, and when it comes creative sparks Brazil have options but they can't all play.

    It's naive to expect a coach to squeeze the likes of Ronaldinho, Robinho, Kaka, Diego, and Ganso into the same side. There has to be balance.

  • Comment number 18.

    Mano Menezes is an excellent coach, as is Muricy Ramalho, but I think the only one currently in the market whose reputation could survive 2014 failure is Scolari, for the simple reason that he already has the 2002 title to his name (Parreira is unlikely to be welcome back for yet another stint, but can't be ruled out altogether). Your mention that Mano could be a stop-gap is therefore interesting. Let's see how it plays out, and I wish him luck!
    The notion of fielding only Brazil-based players is a foolish one, since all the country's best players wind up in Europe, at a far too early age imo. Santos is trying desperately to hold onto its young stars, but even their own family members are being coerced in the effort to lure them away, and greed plays a part too.
    The team's unexpected emotional collapse and consequent early elimination in SA may be down to many factors, but lack of pride in donning the shirt certainly isn't one of them.
    As the focus of the world's population evolves towards a 'one world' view, perhaps national football, along with other nationalistic tendencies, will eventually become anachronistic, but for the time being, places like Brazil still need this motivation to bind the people together - indeed, for a country of continental dimensions, Brazil is incredibly homogeneous and united, despite a recent pernicious 'American' trend to play up the Afro-Brazilian and Indigenous identities at the expense of the national one.

  • Comment number 19.

    #16 Yes I agree why should Dunga be treated any differently, maybe Brazil benefits from the expectations it places on their coaches. After all, most countries would not regard reaching the quarter-finals of the world cup as failing.

    It really is win or fail, but that doesn't make Dunga a bad coach, nor the fact that the football wasn't quite as exciting as Parreira's Brazil.

  • Comment number 20.

    Hi Tim,

    Speaking of renewal and nurturing of all-round midfielders, are there any good, young central/defensive midfielders coming through Brazilian ranks? Who do you think are the best candidates to replace the likes of Gilberto Silva in the centre of midfield for the national team?

    And what do you think of young midfielders like Raphael Martinho and Brazil Under-20 player Zé Eduardo, who have both just been signed by Italian clubs in the Serie A?

  • Comment number 21.

    As has been said before on Tim's blog,Dunga's big mistake was in an over-reliance on (a clearly unfit,or at least not at peak fitness) Kaka,and without an alternative to Kaka his whole game plan,it seems to me,was struggling. At 1-1 , and especially at 1-2) against Holland,there was nobody on the bench who could do something special.
    If Ricardo Texeira was the new coach to concentrate on home-based players, I can't see Brazil really threatening at the next WC, when the pressure to succeed will be like nothing ever seen before(well, except perhaps 1950).
    I'm a football loving Brit living in Brazil and I just can't get excited about the game over here.Tim's last blog illustrates perfectly well the inadequecies and weaknesses of the game here. Brazil will always produce highly talented players but there is only ever going to be one destination for them-Europe.
    For what it's worth,I, too, would be very very surprised if Menezes is in charge for the next WC.

  • Comment number 22.

    of course, I meant "if Ricardo Texeira WANTS the new coach"......

  • Comment number 23.

    At 2:55pm on 25 Jul 2010, Dr Wang wrote:
    Good article this, but I believe there is a trend evolving in which people are misinterpreting Brazil.

    Dunga took over 4 years ago, won the copa america the following year and the confederations 2 years after that. They topped the qualifiers to the world cup and their so-called group of death.

    They defeated Chile and had Holland chasing at half-time. They then collapsed in 45 minutes. The expectations are huge in Brazil but let's not confuse that with Dunga's record.

    Similarly, let'e leave Menezes to do a job, who knows he could be leading his nation to glory in 4 years but some have already written him off before he's started.

    Finally, Brazil won the world cup 8 years ago with a midfield pairing of Kleberson and Gilberto Silva, hardly an all-out attacking outfit. Playing a couple of tough tacklers to create room for the flair players is not a new phenomenon.


    dr. wang - certainly, the defensive centre is hardly a new thing in brazil. but its only in the last decade or so, that brazil have employed two together in the centre. dunga, himself a midfield destroyer was paired with leonardo, a play maker. this new trend has become a sign of the times, where the "win at all costs" mentality has become increasingly prevalent.

  • Comment number 24.

    #19- My problem isn't so much the result itself. But the problem is that Dunga sacrificed our style of play, left out talented players, didn't invest in young players, bringing the eldest World Cup squad and leaving virtually no legacy, created a siege mentality among the players, openly mocked the 1982 squad and the ones that praise them, all that for one thing: winning the World Cup.

    All that would be a problem even if he did win the WC, but he didn't.

    #23- Brazil since 1986 employed two defensive midfielders, but usually only one of them was a destroyer per se. 2006 and 2002 had Gilberto Silva alongside more creative players like Zé Roberto and Kleberson, who had excellent World Cups and in 1998 an older and slower Dunga played alongside Cesar Sampaio, who would go forward and also had a great WC, scoring 3 goals. Only 1994 and 2010 had two players who were there to steal the ball only, and even in 1994 Dunga was very useful to attack on occasion.

  • Comment number 25.

    In my opinion Dunga souldn't have left Ronaldinho behind. Ronaldinho is one player that could have provided the solution that Brazil needed in their midfield. I think he left him because of his preferred style of play which is anti-Brazil. Brazil is known for flair and style and Ronaldinho is the master of flair and style. Sorry Dunga, you got it all wrong and you are paying for your mistake now.

  • Comment number 26.

    Evening Tim et al

    Has anyone got a link to what Teixeira said about renewing the Brazil team? Or for that matter what Mano Menezes said about taking on the task?

    Cheers

  • Comment number 27.

    You read it here first: Brazil will not win the 2014 WC.

  • Comment number 28.

    Brazil to win the 2014 WC without a doubt. You wait and see. They have players of great talent.

  • Comment number 29.

    re 24: when and in what way did Dunga ever mock the 1982 team its and admirers? As far as I am aware he has always shown the greatest respect and admiration for the country's football heritage.
    On the other hand, Brazilians were quick to criticise that side for its lack of pragmatism - they only needed a draw but kept on playing for the win. Yet the 1994 winners were criticised for their excessive pragmatism and lack of flair. What more confirmation do you need that, when it comes to the 'seleção' its a no-win situation. And coaching the 2014 side is a poison pill!

  • Comment number 30.

    ronaldhino should play

  • Comment number 31.

    29 - a few months before becoming brazil coach dunga referred to the 82 side as 'specialists in losing.'

  • Comment number 32.


    It's a good argument from #24, especially the 82 squad comment, depending on how it is interpreted, and the siege mentality point. It's more solid when you hear it from a Brazil fan, and so I'll happily back down!

    I still believe it was too early for the likes of Neymar, and I seem to recall some great stuff from Robinho and Kaka that was overlooked. Fabiano played the central role supremely, but then Melo never slotted in and Ramires didn't quite step up.

    Good luck to Menezes, it's a tough job exciting crowds and winning everything!

  • Comment number 33.

    #32- I agree that Neymar wasn't needed, but I think Ganso could have been called. Like I said in Tim's previous post, Brazil needed at least on the bench a player with plenty of capacity to hold the ball or to pass it, to accelerate or slow down the pace of the game, etc, but Dunga didn't call anyone with those characteristics.

    I think Ramires had a great match against Chile, too bad he was suspended against Netherlands. And Robinho simply shouldn't be called again, he's too unreliable and isn't talented enough to worth taking a chance.

  • Comment number 34.

    Ok Brazil haven't had that great and exciting teams after '82, agreed. But reality check since '82, two world cups victories and on final appearance. You delusional football fans out there should name any other country with that success. Football has changed and Brazil is changing with it. If you want entertainment, encourage your own countries to play beautiful.

  • Comment number 35.

    re 31. and you disagree? Beautiful play, no wins. Go figure. This will be the third coach from pragmatic southern Brazilian coaches. Even in 2yrs time when Scolari takes over, Brazil won't be playing beautiful.

  • Comment number 36.

    @35 "re 31. and you disagree? Beautiful play, no wins. Go figure"

    As fans of the beautiful game, we want to be entertained, don't you? I do agree that Brazil won't be playing beautiful any time soon though. They haven't done that since 1982 anyway, the problem is the rest of the world still haven't realised that the "traditional" Brazilian style is long gone.

    For those who want to watch entertaining football, we'll probably have to look elsewhere. Let's hope Argentina find better defenders and a decent keeper and that Maradona learns about tactics in the next 4 years, or that Spain find someone to accompany Villa up front so that they can play more "vertically" rather than their current horizontal passing style, or that the Germans develop more of a personality to impose their style on a tough game, or that the Dutch decide to start playing instead of butchering the opposition, etc, etc, etc.

    All these teams have a lot less work to do than Brazil and will be in a much better position to win the next WC. Brazil are not only an ordinary team these days, but they will also have to contend with the pressure their people will exert on them, and this time they won't be able to "hide" by playing all their friendlies overseas!

  • Comment number 37.

    Unlike 2006, when it seemed, at least to me, that Brazil had no substitutes for the likes of Ronaldinho and Ronaldo, the next 4 years may unleash a Brazilian team with flair not seen since 2005, when they won the Confederations Cup in outstanding fashion.

    There's plenty of great new talents with amazing technique in Brazil that have not yet had any impact in the game or have just begun their professional careers. Certainly, they still have 4 years to keep evolving and perhaps have a chance at the international level, but this will mostly depend on their career choices and personal will. Ganso, Neymar and Pato are the most talked about, but I can also name attacking midfielder Philippe Coutinho and striker\winger Wellington Silva.

    Philippe Coutinho has amazing technique, wonderful dribbling skills and great vision of the game for such a young player (18 years old), but it seems to me that he lacks pace sometimes. Anyway, he showed great promise during the 1st semester with Vasco and is now on the move to Inter Milan.

    Wellington Silva, instead, could either become an unstoppable winger or a killer striker. He has lightning-quick dribbling skills, great vision and attack-minded attitude toward the game. Had some good games at the professional level with Fluminense and should be moving next year to Arsenal, as soon as he completes 18.

  • Comment number 38.

    @ 36. All these teams have a lot less work to do than Brazil and will
    be in a much better position to win the next WC.
    --------------------------------------------------------------

    You're so wrong. Brazil players are tailor made for that traditional samba style, even with the current squad. Baring Silva and Melo, all the other starters have been seen attacking constantly for their clubs. Can't deny that fact. They could just change to that if the coach wishes.

    They're just being realistic. You can't just attack and showboat these days without any pragmatism. it'll be a suicide mission. If you think that slow methodical one nil football Spain plays is beautiful,you're solely mistaken. Spain is driven by Xavi and Iniesta and I doubt they'll be the same if around, in four years. eventually, Scolari will take over and blend style with pragmatism like he did in 2002.

  • Comment number 39.

    #34/35 Here we are talking about Brazil, who are known for its beautiful play for years. Your last comment reminds me one of Dunga's disrespectful comments towards us(brazilian football lovers). When we come to brazil, football is not all about winning, it should be way of expressing its natural creativity. Any coach, at least, has to let some players to use their talent, if building entertaining team become difficult for some(may be known) reasons.

    Tim, i'm a huge fan of you! Can you write something more about Menez and the current situation? Which players you expect under Menez?
    Can you name the probable 11 or 23 of 2014 under Menez or the potential coach(i know it is too early)? who do you think the central midfielders will be? Hernanes and Lucas leiva? , i hope i will have a reply from you.

  • Comment number 40.

  • Comment number 41.

    Brazil has a long line of great young players ready to play the world cup in 4 years. Neymar, Ganso, Jonas, Denilson, Lucas, Phillipe Coutinho, Tiago Silva, Marcelo, André, Kerrison, Ramires, Renato Augusto, to name a few. Most of these players are offensive players which will make Brazil a prettier side to watch. Those players I listed are just the young promising ones since there will still be Kaka, Julio Cesar, Maicon, Daniel Alves and Robinho in the team. Unlike the squad for the 2010 World Cup, Brazil will have a great bench in 2014.

  • Comment number 42.

    @38 "If you think that slow methodical one nil football Spain plays is beautiful,you're solely mistaken"

    I didn't say that, read my post again

  • Comment number 43.

    @41 "Brazil has a long line of great young players ready to play the world cup in 4 years"

    No, Brazil may have a long line of "promising" young players. It remains to be seen whether they'll turn out to be "great".

  • Comment number 44.

    Hello Tim,
    I have some questions about the Argentina national job. Is it a 100% certain that Diego Maradona will continue? If yes, are the Argentineans out of their minds? If not, why haven't they looked at people like Marcelo Bielsa or Manuel Pellegrini for the job? Surely those two men are much more qualified to work with the amazing squad of players that Argentina has?
    I cannot see Argentina doing well with Maradona and that pair of scary, maffioso-looking guys he has for assistants, no matter how loved the former is by his players. They've shown on a consistent basis that they're out of their depth at international level football management.

  • Comment number 45.

    P.S.:
    I know Bielsa managed the 2002 side that failed miserably. But as you said before, Bielsa has learned from that failure which was due to a faulty physical preparation. I just think from a footballing perspective, Argentina needs Bielsa.

  • Comment number 46.

    If we all calm down a bit and distance ourselves a little bit from the hysteria, you come to realise that actually Dunga did a sterling job!

    This was a coach with zero experience, who won the Copa America and Confederations Cup and was unlucky to lose to the Netherlands by two fluke goals from set pieces.

    How many inexperienced coaches can boast those achievements? The press were especially vindictive against the man painting him as the devil incarnate just because he didn't get on with them.

    History will show whether he was a good manager or not. Let's see how much better the new coach will do.

    In this time and age, you cannot agree with everything in the media - results indicate that this guy would probably score 9/10 for achievement. Maybe his team did not play with much flair but neither did '94 team who won a lucky penalty shoot out and only narrowly survived the same Dutch team at the same stage.

    It was only a matter of time before the Dutch got their own over Brazil and Dunga only happened to be the unfortunate recipient. Remember Brazil should have been 3 or 4 goals ahead before the Dutch equalised with L. Fabiano, Robin and Kaka wasting glorious chances

    Dunga is a human like the rest of us and chose the method that best worked for him. For a loooong time they seemed invincible too, he does not deserve all the undue criticism.

    Unfortunately not all press coverage is motivated by truth these days, personal agenda's and scores to settle often creep in resulting in a very biased portrayal of events.

  • Comment number 47.

    Do Brazil really need to make whole sale changes inorder to be more attractive as seems to be the demand? Assuming that Gilberto Silva hangs up his boots or is not picked then they only need to replace him with an attacker on the right side. And as the current trend is to cut in rather than go on the outside that still leaves space for Maicon to bomb forward. Changing the mentality may be harder though.

  • Comment number 48.

    4. At 12:15pm on 25 Jul 2010, Messi4LFC wrote:
    Anyone would be a better manager than Dunga - he just didn't understand or have a clue about the football culture in his own country!! The way he made them play was absolute disgrace, the man simply took away all the skill factors and enjoyment associated with Brazil. He wanted to create a team based on the worst part of European team, win at any cost and parking 11 buses behind the ball, rather than utilising what his country known for!!

    Dunga, I really hope you watched the artisan and the beauty of Spain, as that's what people expect of your country!! They also showed that you can play pure, imaginative, beautiful, artistic and wonderful football!!

    --------------------------------------------------------------

    You do realise that Spain played the same system as Brazil right?
    I mean you're not suggesting that Xavi Alonso and Busquets are attacking choices?

    Dunga did an excellent job in all but 1 game. He won the Confederations and Copa America and topped the Qualifying, the players are more to blame than the manager and his system. The same system that both World Cup finalists were playing, that Germany played and is generally a successful way to play for the last few years in domestic and international football.

  • Comment number 49.

    Best name for the job at the moment. If he really commit with what he said (a team with the majority of local players) he will make the Brazilian people really happy.

    More than win the team of 2014 needs to have identification with the country. The supporters want to go the stadium and cheer for the players that they are use to see every week. If Brazil win the WC of course will be fantastic but at the moment what all the Brazilian people wants is to have the team closer of them like use to be before.

  • Comment number 50.

    at 48. I agree with you, all the negative stuff about Dunga is coming after one bad second half against the Netherlands.

    I think Brazilians still think they can play like they did in 1970 and 1982 but the game has moved on. Also I think they lack some real special quality at the moment, world class players at their peak. Luis Fabiano and Robinho are no Ronaldo or Rivaldo, or Careca and Zico. Kaka was not 100% fit. I think there are other reasons why Brazil failed, not just Dunga's so-called 'defensive tactics'.

  • Comment number 51.

    There is a romance about Brazilian football that has captivated the football world. However those were in times when the public had little access to Brazilian football stars but with the advent of world football club leagues, today, Brazilian footballers can seen in leagues from the USA, Europe, Russia, Middle East to South East Asia. So does Brazil football really matter anymore?

    Yes they were a sensational team once and have won the trophy more times than other nations and in more countries. World football would be poorer without Brazil's involvement but if I can make an analogy to tennis. Is tennis poorer without McEnroe, Connors, Sampras,or Federer? Answer is no as it is global and new exciting players come to the fore every now and then. Similarly, football has transferred to the Latin teams and Spain, Argentina, and Uruguay now provide that cutting edge. The Brazilian teams in the new century are very different from the sides of the 70'a snd 80's. They are more functional and SE Asian sides and African sides now look more exciting.

    Take Cameroon of 80'S the team that Roger Milla graced. That is a very different team form the one that played in the last World Cup. The gay abandon with which Cameroon played in the 80's is long gone. They were exciting to watch then and a breathe of fresh air--full of verve and pomp.

    In my opinion future World Cups will be functional events with the emphasis on winning. I doubt we will see a Brazil/ Italy final of 1970 again. It should be a festival every four years but with the money and prestige involved now we are unlikely to see spectaculars. A lot of Brazilians now play abroad in other teams so the mystic has gone out of their game. We know now what to expect and sometimes the players club performance isn't matched on the international field. One can only think the new Brazilian coach will be looking to consolidate the team towards getting much higher in 2014 than they did this year.

  • Comment number 52.

    Good to see someone on the Beeb's still footie blogging Phil...

    You have to respect Ramalho saying that contracts should be honoured, but extreme circumstances as potentially getting to manage your home country in a World Cup that it is hosting itself and with that country being Brazil...he surely would be forgiven for making an exception?

    Maybe he thinks Mano Menezes has picked up such a poisoned chalice that the CBF will come calling for him again in a few years time?

  • Comment number 53.

    Tim

    noticed the man you were championing Leonardo hasn't been mentioned in the blog, do you think he would come back into the frame if he gets a job quickly and is successful for a season or two playing the stylish football he tried to implement at Milan, as by the sounds of it Menezes is just keeping the seat warm.

  • Comment number 54.

    To see just how far Brazil have fallen, all you need to do is compare who you would put from 2010 in any other previous Brazil teams. Maybe Cesar and Kaka would make the team but that would be it.

    People tell meFabiano is World Class. He almost certainly is not, having never asserted himself at a real top class European side, nor the champions league on a regular basis. From the last few world cup squads, I would rank fabiano thus amongst the attackers:

    Ronaldo, Ronaldinho, Romario, Rivaldo, Careca, Bebeto, Muller, Edmundo, Fabiano

  • Comment number 55.

    Tim,

    I always thought Ramalho was similar to Dunga in regards to temper, I can remember one or two press conferences where Ramalho blew his top. In his defense though, Ramalho would have certainly brought in more Brazilian League players into the fold, certainly Diego Souza & Diego Tardelli who were all but ignored by Dunga, Souza played one half against Bolivia and Tardelli played in 4 matches, which I believe were all friendly matches.

    I like Menezes but I think his Brazilian National Team will be a low scoring side, he's like Capello minus the regal pomp and winner's pedigree.

    BTW I wonder if you could settle this bet... wasn't Rodrigo Gaal a Brazilian player that used to celebrate his goals by prentending to fire a rifle into the crowds? Somebody told me it was Fernando Baino but I'm convinced it was Gaal.

  • Comment number 56.

    Can't wait to see the team he picks for the friendly against the US. The selection should be announced in the next few hours.

    On another note, I really enjoyed Julian Shea's piece on Socrates, although the picture at the bottom of that article is Zico, not Socrates.

  • Comment number 57.

    #53 Got to reiterate that whatever you may believe the reality to be, the CBF, Menezes, and the Brazilian fans should all take the view that Menezes will be there in 4 years.

    Perhaps a bit of confidence behind the coach will unite the nation, and Menezes himself will not be taking this role on just to warm a seat, he'll go for it and rightly so.

  • Comment number 58.

    not all of southern Brazil is made of pragmatic european descendants. Although mostly white, the south has produced some awesome black players... Ronaldinho being a prime example.

  • Comment number 59.

    @El Presidente: when relating to the press, Ramanho is more similar to Dunga, no doubt about it (although he DOES NOT has a personal war against the press like Dunga... he does relates well with some reporters, takes part in some exclusive interviews and can be quite cheerful. Ramalho is ONLY grumpy when in press conferences after matches. Dunga is ALWAYS grumpy. Also, Ramalho does not loses his cool at the sidelines, like Dunga.)


    Anyway, about Ramalho vs Menezes, I would say Ramalho is way better in leagues. Menezes is way better in play-offs and Cups. Thus, imho, Menezes is more suited for the job with the brazilian team. If the World Cup was like a league, Ramalho would be my choice.

  • Comment number 60.

    There has been far too much drama post-Brazil's elimination in the WC. That Brazil team was more than good enough to beat the Netherlands and get to the final, however I doubt they would have been able to beat Spain.

    All this talk of serious re-building and not having enough quality to work with is absolute garbage, Brazil looked good value for money until they imploded in the second half against the Netherlands. The culmination of a moment of madness from Felipe Melo and a bizarre goal-keeping/defensive shambles in my opinion cruelly sent them out.

    I know the football purists enjoyed trashing Dunga's defensive set-up but seriously, gone are the days of samba football and instead a more pragmatic approach is needed when the pressure is far greater than it used to be.

    Brazil still have one of the best national squads so please can we stop the melodramatics.

  • Comment number 61.

    I agree with #60.

    People seem to forget what type of teams win single-elimination games more often. Yes, Barcelona can win it, and so can Spain, but that style demands a fair amount of talent and luck. Besides, I personally don't see Spain play a very attacking minded style; they do indeed keep the possession, but that's about as attacking as they go.

  • Comment number 62.

    Dunga had a great run, under him Brazil won 41 out of the 59 matches played and lost only six. He won the Copa America and the Confederations Cup. But for ten minutes of madness and bad luck Brazil would have gone on to become World Champions. People who blame him for dropping Ronaldinho forget that Ronaldinho has been piss poor for years, he lacks commitment is over weight. He played in the 2006 WC in a Brazil team that was considered to be better than the 2010 team. Ronaldino had little impact in the 2006 World Cup and was hardly likely to be better four year latter several pounds fatter and several millions richer. Brazil losing was just one of those things. Brazil had the rub of the green required to win world cups in 94 and 2002 thet didn't in 98, 06 &10

  • Comment number 63.

    Goalkeeper: Jefferson (Botafogo), Renan (Avai), Victor (Gremio)

    Defenders: Andre Santos (Fenerbahce), Dani Alves (Barcelona), Marcelo (Real Madrid), Rafael da Silva (Manchester United), David Luis (Benfica), Henrique (Racing Santander), Rever (Atletico Mineiro), Thiago Silva (AC Milan)

    Midfielders: Carlos Eduardo (Hoffenheim), Ederson (Lyon), Paulo Henrique Ganso (Santos), Hernanes (Sao Paulo), Jucilei (Corinthians), Lucas Leiva (Liverpool), Ramires (Benfica), Sandro (Internacional)

    Forwards: Alexandre Pato (AC Milan), Andre (Santos), Diego Tardelli (Atletico Mineiro), Neymar (Santos), Robinho (Santos, on loan from Manchester City)

    Very young squad , a lot of talent there though.

  • Comment number 64.

    The deepest of my fears materialyzed. The 2 obvious choices for coaches (felipao and muricy) would deny a project alrealdy set by the president. Both coaches known for their avertion for lack of seriousness. Renovation at all costs is the word of order, decided by the president as you point out tim, even at costs of balance, experience and inteligence.

    Just like dunga 4 years ago, the new manager repeats the same presidents mantra after WC defeat just like an paid speecher would do. They got the perfect option, someone that would not deny the project for knowing that more aknowlegdeble, experienced coaches could be there and still they have a plus for relying on corinthians fan base to back this thing up for now.

    I think a close look in the transition of brazil coaching since legendary Tele santana would be interesting, starting with Lazaroni, a very criticized person that actuslly made a great squad that did the best performance agaisnt maradona's argentina in 1989 copa america (they got away shotless in that game, wich also had the famous bebeto strike in maracana) they lost to argentina in 1990 without the main strikers (bebeto and romario) and dominating argentina and after this bad loss, wich would put us 24 years without a cup, coincidentaly along with the changes that cable tv would bring to the marketing side of the sport, we started those campaigns where winning is everything, exactly with dunga and parreira. Ricardo Teixeira realized how serious business is the brazil brand of football and since them our technical expertises are out of the way starting any project, its just happen to terrorifies me that no one here in brazil seems to get the repetitive pattern. Fact is that the start of the plan was perfect, brazil won in 1994 and regained its crown in the world since them. Winning in 2002 helped, but felipao clearly made his way in the process and he did not kept the job cause he didnt want to deal with cbf again and all the bad part of it.

    i may sound catastrofic here, since brazil won 2 out of 5 and still made decent runs through the tournament, but this time it just happen to be at home, and we can have the unpleasent chance of being the first nation losing twice. An as history recalls, 1950 was lost after they complete lose focus and respect for opponents, having a enviroument of parties and comemoration before the final. 2006 came to remember that we are the masters of despising important alrealdy learnt lessons.

    abs

  • Comment number 65.

    hexa with jogo bonito? who wouldn't love that!

    time for brasil to start re-building. pato NEEDS to take these chances and stake his claim. ganso and neymar have gone quiet since brasileirao started y'day neymar said he will reproduce his form of first half 2010. let's see it happen! mano will be managing lot of youngsters in the coming months best to keep their attitude in check, but not their talent! vamos pra frente brasil!

  • Comment number 66.

    just in case it wasnt clear in my last msg, my point is brasil had alrealdy brought flair and talent to WC in recent times, and the key point to failure wasnt the lack of quality as some may use this last Wc as example, but the environemt that surrounding it. football has this strong abilty to bring background issues to the field. As Muricy, the coach that refused the job, oftens repeat 'The ball punishes', lets see how ironic this statement coming from him will sound at the end. Once agian, we may have a great squad, like in 2006, and just like that year the greed forces that played agsint success are working in full throtle behind the scenes.

  • Comment number 67.

    why do i have the funny feeling that menezes would not last long

  • Comment number 68.

    Tim

    Understandably Brazil need to produce a team that will be ripe enough for the 2014 world cup but I hope this Manager will not be so naive and dump the experience players such as Julio Cesar, kaka, Maicon, Lucio, Fabiano and co in the main term. You cannot have a team just full of youngstars without experience and expect to go win a world cup. what is the reaction of the Brazillian public to the squad selection?

  • Comment number 69.

    The problem with CBF and Brazilian fans on a whole is that they lack patience. I think the sand timer for Menezes starts ticking with the friendly against the U.S next month. If as you say he fields a young experimental side and they lose (as expected), the sand timer is almost halfway through. The olympics will not count against him should Brazil win gold, silver or Bronze or nothing. The final straw would be the Copa America 2011. If they don't win (regardless of where they finish) the timer would run out and he would be sacked. That would be almost 1yr on the job. Then Scolari takes over just like you said:)
    I think Brazilians on a whole should lower their expectations of the team under whoever is coaching them. They should not always be expecting to win all the time especially when the balance of power has shifted from South America to Europe and other continents i.e. Africa and Asia are catching up.

  • Comment number 70.

    Castanha - Post 51: "In my opinion future World Cups will be functional events with the emphasis on winning. I doubt we will see a Brazil/ Italy final of 1970 again. It should be a festival every four years but with the money and prestige involved now we are unlikely to see spectaculars. A lot of Brazilians now play abroad in other teams so the mystic has gone out of their game. We know now what to expect and sometimes the players club performance isn't matched on the international field"

    -------------------

    You got that 100% correct - the stats back up your quote. The number of Brazilian World Cup team members (out of the squad of 22) playing club football abroad at the time of each tournament goes like this:
    1970: 0
    1974: 0
    1978: 0
    1982: 2
    1986: 2
    1990: 12
    1994: 12
    1998: 11
    2002: 10
    2006: 19
    2010: 19

  • Comment number 71.

    #69 definetely a balanced squad, but a few things let me concerned. Jefferson at goal, theres at least 2 young players and more respected and talented ones, diego alves and fabio. MAybe he did that to please Press from Rio (strong in brazil), since he is the only one plyaing down there.

    Andre in attack, along with neymar, ganso and robinho, form the famous kids from santos attack. While the formers are great prospects the latter is not at their level. did he call him because he thinks its better to bet on their chemistry or just to please the press again that smashed dunga for not doing so?

    and more important, where are experience? is he just givin them some rest or is he going to sweep them disrespectfully from the NT like they did not contributed whatsoever in 4 years work?

    Mano is not a man above all suspicious, he had problems for trying to bring his players to media hyped corinthians exposing other concerns he has besides the game itself. just like Wanderley luxemburgo and his controversial time managing seleçao.

    -------------------

    #70 "I doubt we will see a Brazil/ Italy final of 1970 again. It should be a festival every four years but with the money and prestige involved now we are unlikely to see spectaculars. A lot of Brazilians now play abroad in other teams so the mystic has gone out of their game"

    don't agree, you just have to analyze the confed team from 2005, wich made arguably the best international performance in this decade agaisnt argentina, with flair and quality. this team did not play in 2006 for contract purposes, cicinho, gilberto, robinho and adriano were sacked for 2006wc for the posterboys in campaigns for guarana and nike. PArreira was a stool, only witnessing the bad football and not doing what he could and was already proven to be the best agaisnt france. he not only denied the best selection to play, but when it was time to change the game in second half, he made the most outrageous substitution ever, putting adriano alongside ronaldo (a always proven to be a dead end move) and only putting robinho at 75th min.

    this last 4 years, brazi identity was put on hold, to give place to a one man project and effort, relying in his inexperience and defensive minded background. wich doesnt deny the fact we did have quality players around the world that could do an espetacular final against spain.

  • Comment number 72.

    Tim, correct me if I'm wrong, but Dunga isn't the only Brazilian to ridicule the 1982 World Cup side. According to you, that team, upon its return to Brazil, was heavily ridiculed and criticized for failing to win the World Cup by journalists and fans despite the fact that they played football the true "Brazilian" way. Better to lose playing beautiful football than to win ugly indeed!

    The Brazilian manager's job seems to be an unforgivable poison pill. If anything, Dunga wasn't fired because of his failure to win the World Cup, but because he was forced out by the media mob. No wonder Ramalho turned down the CBF's offer, he gets to keep his successful reputation intact!

    But I honestly don't get all this "pragmatist" trash. Apart from the 45 minutes of disaster against Holland, Brazil played great football during the World Cup. To say they lacked flair and creativity is nonsense. Robinho, Kaka, Maicon, Elano, and Fabiano all provided plenty of examples of Brazilian flair and verve. In fact, I would argue that they fell apart against Holland because they lacked "pragmatism!"

    I'm sure there are plenty of Portuguese, English, French, and Italian fans who would have loved to have seen their respective teams replicate Brazil's form and playing style.

  • Comment number 73.

    #72, have u seen Brazil's games at all? did u forget how the team struggle to open up koreans, fail to score aginst Portugal or to create meaningful goal chances...? U r right, English...want their team to play like Dunga's brazil, but not those who love Brazilian football of flair! Maicon and Elano provided Brazilian Flair? Which Brazil u r talking about?
    And it is better to lose playing beautifully than playing pragmatically with some players with ball controlling and passing problems.

  • Comment number 74.

    @#73, Yes I watched all of Brazil's games, and I saw no lack of flair or creativity. Did the team struggle to open up the Koreans? For the most part yes. But that wasn't because of a lack of quality from Brazil, but because the North Koreans played hard, with heart and determination. You don't give the Koreans enough credit, you underestimated them. But eventually, like all world class teams, Brazil managed to find a way to win the game by scoring two beautifully set up goals.

    As for the Portugal game. That game was set up to be a stinker anyway. Neither team needed a win to progress from their group. So it would have been foolish to spend any energy or risk an injury through playing hard if both teams' fates were already set.

    Maicon and Elano provided plenty of flair for Brazil. Maicon's goal against North Korea was a goal nobody saw coming because of the difficult angle he was forced into shooting, and Elano scored Brazil's second goal in the same game. Then you had Kaka, Robinho, and Fabiano providing lots of fun football for the fans. There was plenty of flair there, but you chose to ignore it. The problem isn't with Brazil's players or coach. It lies with its fans and media. There is too much pressure, too much expectation.

    Dunga led Brazil to Olympic, Confederation Cup, and Copa America glory, and he won 40 matches to just 6 losses - and he still gets fired and ridiculed. Its disgusting to watch and hear about the amount of disrespect Dunga received.

  • Comment number 75.

    I am very impressed with the quality of the comments on this blog, particularly from Dr Wang. Dunga did have an exceptionally successful 4 years with Brazil, with an amazing win rate. Even with the team he took to the World Cup, I believe we could have gone all the way. Brazil dominated Holland in the first half, and had a number of clear chances to go up 2X0 (Robinho's diallowed goal, Juan's shot from 6 feet away, Kaka's lobbed shot and Maicon's 'Carlos Alberto' shot at the end of the first half). In my opinion, Brazil was a better team than Holland. Having said that, I wasn't really rooting for the team. If Dunga had brought one of either Adriano, Ronaldinho, Neymar or Ganso to the world cup, he would have had real options for replacing or helping Kaka. He chose to stick with his guys and we paid the price. Mano Menezes, like Muricy, is a winner. He has experience, something Dunga lacked. Brazil will be competitive in 2014 - we have a great young generation. But the beauty of soccer is that anything can happen on a given day, like it did in the Brazil X Holland game.

  • Comment number 76.

    @#74 If they were creative and flair enough, they wouldn't struggled to create enough and convincing chances. If a Brazil team couldn't open up a korean team-which are less talented but hard working- it means both they are the same. It has nothing to do with giving credit, at the end of the day Brazil is Brazil and Korea is Korea.
    As for Portugal game, do u forgot as there was a possibility of facing Spain, about their historic r/n ship, do u remember how they usually fight in their friendlies, especially the 6-2, the personal fight b/n C. ronaldo and T. Silva...even brazil were series in the game,but couldn't do anything meaningful.
    Scoring from tight angles and a winning goal don't necessarily mean the goals or scorers are flair. These players are hard workers, efficient...they can't be described by the word flair. D. Alves has a better flair than Maicon.
    Kaka and Robinho? i can agree! But for d/t reasons, they didn't do anything special. One can understand Kaka's situation, but Robinho again failed to proof his doubters- both as decisive player and entertainer-, i would be the first to be happy if he did that.
    Dunga led Brazil to glory? No, he humilated us, i hope u remember the game and the result against Argentina.
    As for Confederations and Copa America, i can give him credit, evenif he won them his way and at the same time C. Parreira won them in a better football, by giving chances for players of the future...

  • Comment number 77.

    Finally brazil have made a change for the better good for that country repuation on the international stage after that woeful quarter final performance at the world cup. Hopefully menezes can bring some flair and that good old brazillain samba football that we have died too see for months.

    However tim i was wondering knowing that menezes coached Corinthians with veterans roberto carlos and ronaldo in it do you think he will bring them back into the national team fold? .

    I know this might sound mad knowing that they are miles off their prime and that other young players deserve a chance in this already old ridded team.

    But what i mean is like come into the team as a player/ coach role. We should all know that ronaldo has stated that he plans to retire from football in 2010 as does roberto carlos.

    But do you think menezes might use them as coaches to teach some of these youngster like ganso,neymar,silva ,rafael da silva what its all about putting on a national team shirt.

    But if you are regular viewer of brazillan and south american football you will know that some of ronaldos and roberto carlos performances in the past year should be noted. As they are showing flashes of their past selves. That should not be ignored by menezes as a future call up back into the team.

    But do you think menezes will take a hardline on the more european based who flopped in the world cup such as kaka, luis fabiano who were more than average in the game against holland.

    He has warned that he will not picked players based on favoritism or reputation which see a very good statement to make as it does open to the door too all players who want to prove themselves.

    However as we have known with past coaches that might not be the case for example dunga obviously picked his favourite players as did carlos perrira did as did scorlari did at times but most international coaches may do that but their are serious consquences once politics getted involved in players being picked.

    But where does this leave the likes of diego,ronaldinho,adriano and ferenbahce striker alex who in my opinion have been harshly treated by dunga even though they were given a set of chances but dunga didnt like these players because he favourited more defensive what will menezes stance will be on this, we shall and wait and see as he can only be judge on what hes plans are in the next world cup in brazil and the upcoming copa america.



  • Comment number 78.


    Very fine insights and a nice informative blog by Tim. Brazil has started the rebuilding process on a bright note. The new look Brazilian Selecao has won their first friendly under the new boss. Senhor Mano Menezes has begun his innings on the front foot. Best wishes to the coach and the young players in their mission.


    Dr. Cajetan Coelho

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  • Comment number 81.

    I know this might sound mad knowing that they are miles off their prime and that other young players deserve a chance in this already old ridded team.

    But what i mean is like come into the team as a player/ coach role. We should all know that ronaldo has stated that he plans to retire from football in 2010 as does roberto carlos.

    But do you think menezes might use them as coaches to teach some of these youngster like ganso,neymar,silva ,rafael da silva what its all about putting on a national team shirt. work onlinemake money from homepayday loansbest payday loans..

  • Comment number 82.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

  • Comment number 83.

    P.S.:
    I know Bielsa managed the 2002 side that failed miserably. But as you said before, Bielsa has learned from that failure which was due to a faulty physical preparation. I just think from a footballing perspective, Argentina needs Bielsa. World Most Amazing Records
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  • Comment number 84.

    Very fine insights and a nice informative blog by Tim. Brazil has started the rebuilding process on a bright note. The new look Brazilian Selecao has won their first friendly under the new boss. Senhor Mano Menezes has begun his innings on the front foot. Best wishes to the coach and the young players in their mission. raymond weil watches - anne klein watches - d&g watches - iwc watches - luminox watches

  • Comment number 85.

    What can just a coach do if the team is average?


    cheers
    Pradeep

 

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