Brazil have to find their identity after the World Cup catastrophe, and this year’s Copa America could be a perfect occasion for that.
Football fans in Brazil might be still dizzy after the ugly blow Germany placed on their national teams’ face on home soil in the World Cup semifinal last year. The humiliating 7-1 is now a part of football history as players of online sportsbooks in the EU considers it as one of the biggest fails ever.
- Brazil lost their identity
- Who will support Neymar?
- Brazil have to fight back
Germany was excellent for sure; to blow Brazil to smithereens in front of their own crowd is certainly an achievement to be proud of. As there was nothing Brazilian in Brazil’s performance throughout the tournament, the punishment was right, and maybe it will be an alarm to them to find a way that has something to do with futebol arte.
Brazil is wrong since years
Brazil did not lose their identity last year. Europe has been draining their best players since decades and now decent, half decent and even not so well Brazilian players are moving to the old continent too. They learn how to play football in European systems and the standard of their home league might be lower than ever. From this, it is really a tough task for head coaches to conjure up something Brazilian, something beautiful and artsy to please the most critical and demanding football fans in the world.
It is no surprise that Brazil achieved virtually nothing internationally since their Copa America victory in 2007. They sure won the last two editions of the Confederations Cup in 2009 and 2013 but only to fail in the more serious competitions a year later respectively. They tended to play defensive minded and ultra-disciplined football, which is understandable after the pragmatic approach won them two World Cup titles in 1994 and 2002. However, this is not the way Brazil should play, as their task is always to entertain people, if they want their supporters to remain on their side.
However, what they showed at the 2013 Confederations Cup was anything but horrible. They dominated Spain with pressing and possession, they were aggressive and agile. It was a bit like Chile. After that performance it was shocking to see for everyone who bet on sports in Brazil Selecao switching back to a coward game plan relying on long balls and professional fouls. The low point was in the quarter finals against Colombia, which was like a hooligans’ fight rather than a football match between two teams capable of spectacular football.
After that horror, Germany thrashing them was no other than the Gods of football restoring the balance. Brazil had to be confronted with the face of real football, the way themselves should play too. If they don’t make anything from the biggest lesson they ever learned, they probably won’t avoid mediocrity for a while. They always have that group of fantastic players, but without an updated conception, they will never dominate the footballing world the way they did before.
Brazil need this Copa
The Copa America is a competition where Brazil has a lot of distance to cover. With five titles, they are the most successful nation in World Cup history, however they only won the Copa eight times, which is a relatively small number if we look at Uruguay’s 15 or Argentina’s 14 victories. However, they did their homework recently, winning five of the last ten competitions which is a respectable achievement.
Nevertheless, they want this Copa badly. Or at least they must want it badly, as this is the best opportunity to restore some of the value of their famous yellow jersey. They were unlucky to go into that infamous encounter against Germany without their best player, Neymar, but the Barcelona star’s name will be on the team sheets again. He actually raised his game this year while playing alongside Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez for his club, doubling his tally from last season easily.
With Philippe Coutinho, Robinho and Diego Tardelli is also in the squad, it is interesting who will Dunga pair him up front, as it is hard to imagine that Neymar will act as a lone striker. Great defenders and industrious midfielders are standing in rows waiting to be deployed, but the big question is who will help Barca’s magician to channel the creative energy on the coasts of the Pacific.
Argentina might be too big for them
The potential is clearly there in Brazil and they are as motivated to prove themselves as ever. They could easily emerge as winners from Group C featuring Colombia, Peru and Venezuela. However it is no coincidence that online sportsbooks rank Argentina as favourites to win the Copa, as Sergio Aguero and Carlos Tevez are in the team to support Lionel Messi up front.
According to the draw, it seems that Brazil will meet Argentina in the semifinal, so Selecao looks like definitive favourite for third place finish. With Brazil finding their rhythm and their right personnel in the group phase though, they could be able to exploit holes in Argentina’s defence, however it is hard to see them stopping Messi and co. from scoring.
Brazil and their fans could be happy, if they would find an effective and likeable way to play. With Dunga, they have to back from a dead end Luis Felipe Scolari led the team, and in the group stage they can show against Colombia that they are brave enough to play spectacular football against a team capable of the same thing. With that happening, any mobile betting player would be an instant winner.