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This blog reflects on soccer qua football all over the world. The blog has a specific investment in attractive, attacking football and, as such, focuses on Brazil, the most emphatic historical exponent of the beautiful game.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Mano Menezes Announces Brazil Squad for Germany Friendly

Mano Menezes named one of his trademark, experimental squads for the Brazilian national team's friendly against Germany in Stuttgart on August 10. The Brazilian coach dropped Elano, Sandro, Jadson, Luisao and Adriano and replaced them with Fernandinho, Luis Gustavo, Renato Augusto, Dede and striker Jonas. Once again, Mano omitted Kaka and Ronaldinho from the national team. The Hulk marked another surprising omission given Brazil's problems scoring goals at Copa America. Predictably, Mano's squad prizes youth over experience, but it fails to address the lack of cohesion in Brazil's midfield that resulted from Mano's 4-3-3 formation. Copa America illustrated how Ganso needs help running the Brazilian midfield. Moreover, the tournament embarassingly revealed how the three pronged strike formation of Pato, Neymar and Robinho failed to pose more of an offensive threat than two strikers. Brazil may be better off returning to a 4-2-2-2 formation with Lucas and Ramires behind Ganso and Renato Augusto, who in turn lie behind Robinho and Pato. Kaka and Ronaldinho would have been strong choices to field against Germany alongside Ganso, but Mano has once again opted to select young players that are likely to bring speed and vitality to the squad. All in all, the squad selection represents a highly courageous move on Mano's part to stick with his conviction to renovate the Brazilian national team at precisely the time when he badly needs a victory to shore up the security of his position as coach.

Brazil's squad for the August 10 friendly against Germany is as follows:

Goalkeepers: Julio Cesar (Inter Milan), Victor (Gremio)

Defenders: Andre Santos (Fenerbahce), Daniel Alves (Barcelona), Maicon (Inter Milan), David Luiz (Chelsea), Dede (Vasco de Gama), Lucio, Thiago Silva (AC Milan)

Midfielders: Lucas Leiva (Liverpool), Ramires (Chelsea), Fernandinho (Shakhtar Donetsk), Ganso (Santos), Elias (Atletico Madrid), Lucas (Sao Paulo), Luis Gustavo (Bayern Munich), Ralf (Corinthians), Renato Augusto (Bayer Leverkusen)

Forwards: Alexandre Pato (AC Milan), Fred (Fluminense), Neymar (Santos), Robinho (AC Milan), Jonas (Valencia)

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