The five times World Cup champions, Brazil have confirmed their 18-men roster for the upcoming Rio Olympics 2016, which is scheduled to start from 5th August and as expected the Barcelona superstar Neymar has been included and will lead the squad. Apart from Neymar, electrifying Bayern Munich winger Douglas Costa and dependable Paris Saint-Germain defender Marquinhos has also been named in the 18-men team.
After a disappointing performance in the just concluded Copa America where the Seleçãos were eliminated from the group stage, the CBF sacked their head coach Dunga and replaced him with Tite. But in the Olympics, the Brazil Under-20 manager Rogerio Micale will be coaching the national team, and he has announced his 18-man squad on Wednesday for the upcoming global event on home soil.
A statement on Brazil football’s official website confirmed; “The coach Rogério Micale called the Olympic Brazilian team to compete in the Rio 2016 Games were related 18 players who will in search of unprecedented winning the gold medal for Brazil.”
Neymar, who has been in sublime form throughout the season and scored 24 goals for Barcelona, was dropped from the squad for the Copa America so that he gets proper rest before the ‘Greatest Show on the Earth’ begins. Costa also missed the same inter-continental football championship with an injury. Now both the players have been included in the squad for Olympics as two of the team’s three overage selections. To fill up the third overage quota, Micale has chosen the 37-year old veteran goal keeper Fernando Prass.
The 19-year old Gabriel Barbosa, who is famously known as Gabigol, gets a chance to partner with Neymar and Costa at the Olympics. Gabigol is projected as the next big star in Brazil and is very much likely to form a dangerous trio at the upfront with country’s current two superstars.The other players who could play a crucial role in Brazil’s quest for Gold include Bayern youngster Rafinha, PSG’s Marquinhos and Lazio’s Felipe Anderson .
The Seleçãos have won almost every major football tournaments of the world, but never won an Olympic gold medal. At the London Olympics, four years ago, Neymar led the team to the Gold Medal Match, but settled for Silver as the team lost to Mexico in the final.
Football is like religion in Brazil and with the Olympics on home soil, there will be a lot of pressure on Brazil to win gold for the first time. Seleçãos is one of the favorites to top the podium and anything less than gold will be regarded as a major disappointment to Brazilian fans.
Brazil will start their campaign against South Africa in Brasilia on day 4 followed by Iraq on day 7 at the same venue. On day 10, Brazil will face Denmark in Salvador, Fonte Nova Arena. Check out the 18-men squad of Brazil for the Rio Olympics 2016:
GOALKEEPERS: Uilson (Atletico Mineiro), Fernando Prass (Palmeira).
DEFENDERS: Marquinhos (PSG), Rodrigo Caio (Sao Paulo), Luan (Vasco da Gama), Zeca (Santos), Douglas Santos (Atletico Mineiro), William (Internacional).
MIDFIELDERS: Fred (Shakhtar Donetsk), Rafinha (Barcelona),Thiago Maia (Santos), Felipe Anderson (Lazio), Rodrigo Dourado (Internacional).
FORWARDS: Neymar (Barcelona), Douglas Costa (Bayern Munich), Gabriel Barbosa (Santos), Gabriel Jesus (Palmeiras), Luan (Gremio).