Published: Tue, May 15, 2018
Sport | By Wendy Sparks

Recovering Neymar confirmed in Brazil's World Cup squad

Recovering Neymar confirmed in Brazil's World Cup squad

"Brazil is one of the favorites given the football it has shown, given its consistency", Tite said at the team announcement in Rio de Janeiro.

The Paris Saint-Germain star has been sidelined since February after needing surgery on a fractured foot.

"That's not being arrogant, it's just telling the truth", Tite said.

"We've been making new exams on Neymar and his evolution is really fine", team doctor Rodrigo Lasmar told reporters.

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The Selecao will prepare for the tournament with friendlies against Croatia and Austria on June 3 and 10, respectively.

Brazil will need him showing all the skills that made him the world's most expensive footballer, with a record 222 million euros ($264 million) transfer from Barcelona to PSG last August.

Manchester City quartet Ederson, Danilo, Fernandinho and Gabriel Jesus are included, along with Chelsea's Willian and Liverpool's Roberto Firmino. Tite said he needs "a pacemaker" in the team, which he has not received from Beijing Guoan's Renato Augusto.

The biggest question mark now remains around who will replace Neymar's club team-mate Dani Alves at right back after he suffered a season-ending injury during the French Cup final.

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Pedro Geromel (Gremio), third-choice goalkeeper Cassio and defender Fagner (both Corinthians) are the only players in the squad now plying their trade in the Brasileiro Serie A. "But Roberto Firmino will fight for that position in top form", Tite said.

Tite previously confirmed 15 names of his squad for the tournament, which starts in exactly one month's time, and has now named the rest of the players.

Their campaign begins against Switzerland on June 17.

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