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Brazil defines World Cup list

05-12-2010 10:18 BJT

RIO DE JANEIRO, May 11 (Xinhua) -- Exactly one month away from the beginning of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, the captain of Brazil's 1994 World Cup championship team and current head coach of the Brazilian national team, Dunga divulged on Tuesday the list of players he will carry to South Africa.

Keeping true to his promise of avoiding any "surprises", the coach named only the 23 athletes that will make the trip across the Atlantic Ocean.

Over the past three years and 10 months, Dunga has invited, analyzed and put to test some 85 Brazilian athletes.

He claims that his work has been long and tedious, but the result has led him to select only the best of players to represent Brazil next month on the world's largest stage of soccer.

As a former midfielder, Dunga called eight players in the position.

Coincidentally, Dunga's list of players is the same team that he used in the friendly against Ireland on March 2 in their 2-0 victory. Sticking to his promise of not having any surprise names on the list, Dunga left out the young and talented strikers at Santos Neymar and Paulo Henrique Ganso.

Neither of the athletes participated in a single game for the national team, falling out of Dunga's category of potential players to defend Brazil in South Africa. Additionally, Adriano ( Flamengo) and Ronaldinho (Milan/Italy) were omitted from the list of players to defend Brazil in South Africa.

Perhaps the only surprise of the divulgation was the inclusion of Grafite in place of Adriano. "Without a doubt, there is no bigger emotion than this. It is every child's dream to one day wear the Brazilian national team's jersey in the World Cup. Today, my dream came true. I owe this honor to my wife, my kids and my father who recently passed away. I know that he is in heaven looking down on me," said Grafite upon learning of his place on the national team.

In respect to Adriano, Dunga declared that his heart wanted to include the polemic striker on the national team. However, reason and rationality led him to opt for Grafite for reasons of conviction and discipline.

The entire Santos soccer team delayed their trip to Porto Alegre on Tuesday in order to hear the official announcement. Santos will face Gremio on Wednesday in the first leg of the semifinals of the 2010 Brazilian Cup. At the team's headquarters, Robinho showed his gratification for being included on the list, but at the same time demonstrated his support and frustration for his teammates, Paulo Henrique Ganso and Neymar, for being excluded from Dunga's list.

"They were sad when they learned that they were left out, just like any other player would be. However, they have a bright future and will certainly be part of many upcoming World Cups," said Robinho.

Neymar, compared to the legend Pele, declared that he was disappointed upon hearing the news. Nevertheless, he stated that he will cheer for Brazil during the World Cup and hopes for a spot on the team in 2014 when Brazil will host the world's largest and most prestigious tournament of soccer.

As demanded by FIFA, the governing body of worldwide soccer, Brazil must hand in a list of seven players noted as reserve players. These players will be able to substitute an injured player, if medically proven, and replace him as one of the 23 players to compete in the World Cup.

Dunga and the Brazilian Confederation of Soccer (CBF) did not divulge publically the list of seven extra players, but will need to submit the additional players at the end of the day.

With only one month left before the World Cup kicks off, Tuesday is the deadline for 32 coaches throughout the world to declare their respective list of players to play in South Africa.

"Belive in us and cheer for us. Give us the privacy to conclude a great work that has been constructed over the last three years. Please don't interrupt our work like you did in 2006, yielding a poor result in Germany," said Dunga.

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