Brazil, World Cup

Samba Sadness

Scolari Pic for BlogBrazil’s game today was not a clear indication that Germany is a thousand times better than them – rather, today’s game was a clear indication that they missed their best defensive player and their best offensive player.

Germany didn’t have much of a challenge today (if any), and Brazil lost their game against Germany before it even started (which I honestly didn’t expect). I said in a previous post about Brazil that Scolari missed the boat with some of the selections he’s made for the World Cup. Lucas deserved to be called up as he offers the flair that they so sorely missed without Neymar today. With Thiago Silva missing the game, Filipe Luís would have been a great player to put in the back next to Dante, especially considering that he is more defensive-minded than Marcelo – who I believe has been a weak link throughout the World Cup.

But all of that is quite irrelevant, and what is relevant is Brazil’s unfashionable demise… In this World Cup David Luiz pic for blog
Brazil never emphasized playing their Joga Bonito style football. Instead of playing the “beautiful game” as they are known for, they relied on midfield grittiness from the likes of Paulinho, Luis Gustavo, and Fernandinho – and in my opinion this proved to be their downfall. They simply could not compete with Germany’s midfield offensively, and as a result were completely take advantage of. Brazil’s best defense has historically been it’s attack, and today that was clearly proven as they lacked any semblance of attacking structure. Their dependence on Neymar throughout the World Cup was impeccably obvious today. Their team got by when Neymar was healthy, and it would have certainly been interesting to see if Thiago Silva could have influenced their defense if he were in the game. But ultimately, and as I said before, their absence is irrelevant, and Brazil should have never lost so terribly to Germany in the first place. Furthermore, I can’t comprehend why the best right back in the world – Dani Alves – didn’t start in such an important game. While I do like Maicon, he is way past his prime and should not have been given the chance on such a big stage today. Brazil will now need to respond with fury if they are to defend their World Cup performance – and the best way to do this is to dominate in the third place game.

Andre pic for blogBut anyway, Luiz Felipe Scolari will have a really tough time dealing with the football press as Brazil’s suffered it’s worst defeat in their 94 years of football. This game was not just a loss, but it was a uppercut to Brazil’s football willpower and a microcosm of their larger issue – that they need to field more technically sound creative players. Joga Bonito is not dead, just as Tika-Taka is not dead – Brazil just needs to find the players to play with a technical love and passion that they have seemed to miss this entire world cup. Also, Brazil lacked depth, and that is Scolari’s fault first and foremost. Countinho deserved a spot after his year at Liverpool… Pato is better in Scolari’s system than either Fred or Jo, and Miranda played lights out for Atletico this year. Yet, Scolari overlooked them all, which is utterly unbelievable.

That said, Germany’s performance should be admire as they took all the chances that Brazil gave them. Germany is playing much better with Khedira and he should continue to start. Furthermore, Hummel’s return seemed to have shored up a defense that was terrible against Algeria.

One more point: André Schürrle should start in the final and for Chelsea this year. He’s more clinical than people give him credit for and takes all the chances he gets without a moment’s hesitation.



12 thoughts on “Samba Sadness

  1. I do not totally agree with this article, since I watched some of Brazil’s best matches on this World Cup, the best being their game against Columbia. Based on how they played, I always knew that Germany was going to progress, sure this score was not what I predicted but I was seeing a comfortable win for Germany. Brazil has been the one team not to fire on all cylinders and to depend on one player, was always going to bring their downfall. Even Argentina were better than Brazil even though they rotated around Messi. But think about this look at the current line up for Brazil and Argentina, you would take Argentina any day over Brazil, stronger attack, more reliable defense and a decent midfield. However as one sided as this game was I believe the final will be played out tomorrow and Holland or Argentina will go on to win the World Cup.

    • Thanks for the comment Farish!

      I can’t agree with you that Argentina’s has all around been much better than Brazil… Consider this – they were in a relatively easy group, and only just won against Iran by 1 spectacular goal by Messi who has been relied on so much (in the same way that Brazil relied on Neymar). In other words, they have not played spectacularly either.

      That said, considering how immensely talented Neymar and Thiago Silva are, it would have been interesting to see how they (plus Dani Alves who SHOULD have started) would have faired against Germany.

      Furthermore, I make the points that Lucas and Filipe Luís should have been utilized in this World Cup. It’s remarkable that Scolari didn’t take advantage of all of Brazil’s talent and instead emphasized players like Luis Gustavo and Maicon.

      Brazil lacked depth, and that is Scolari’s fault first and foremost. Countinho deserved a spot after his year at Liverpool… Pato is better than either Fred or Jo, and Miranda played lights out for Atletico this year… Yet, Scolari overlooked them all…

  2. anzig says:

    Brazil was not only missing Neymar and Thiago Silva. They also lost their savior IMHO, some experienced player who can take you out from such a deep mess. Oscar and Hulk were good last night, but they were not team player.

    I am just curious, even in a deep mess, Scolari kept stick to Fred? Blasphemy

    • Agreed, he’s been ineffective all World Cup. I think Neymar was their ‘savior’ although they could have used a second ‘savior’ like Lucas or Pato who have technical flair and are able to turn the tides of a game on their on. Plus they are team players always willing to sacrifice.

    • That doesn’t matter – he’s the best right back in the entire world. You wouldn’t bench Messi or Ronaldo just because they have a couple poor performances in a row.

      Alves deserved better, and his replacement Maicon is not at all close to his former self (when he played at Inter).

  3. Soccerzomb says:

    You sound biased. Your Barcelona allegiance is evident in all of your post. Tiki-taka is dead, the best players in play Tiki-taka for Barcelona, but the difference is opponents know how to kill tiki-taka. Marcelo is the weak link? He was the only one creating any danger alongside Hulk until the debacle. Weak links in Brazil are David Luiz, Oscar, Fred, and Paulinho, funny you mention Marcelo. And please do not even mention Dani Alves. He offers zero defence, compared to how much Marcelo defends and his only strength is his speed and the long shot. He was the weakest link in Barcelona all last year. Maicon was more reliable than him, maybe not as reliable as needed in the back to be world champions. They needed Ronaldinho, he maybe old but he can control the game like Giggs or Paul scholes could. They messed up on Diego Costa by not giving him proper attention.

    • I appreciate your comment but disagree with almost all of it. If Marcelo is so fantastic then he should have been starting for Real towards the end of the season (but he got beat out by Fábio Coentrão).

      Furthermore, I’m not biased – a couple months ago I wrote a post glorifying Real for their magnificent season.

      On your terrible point about Dani Alves – he’s been the best right back in the world for the past five years and Brazil’s best defense is their attack – and against Germany Scolari employed Marcelo and Maicon not as fullbacks but as WING backs (a position Alves excels at more than fullback).

      Moreover, Ronaldinho is way past his prime when he could control games… The last time he did that was in 06 and 07 – he can’t control games anymore, otherwise he’d be playing in a top league… Just imagine for a second a 34 year old Ronaldinho competing with Schweinsteiger and Kroos…

      Yes they screwed up on Costa but Scolari told him that Fred would be his starter so it was a logical decision for him to pick Spain, especially considering their success as one of the best teams of all time over the past decade.

  4. when brazil lost to uruguay on home soil in 1950 world cup final , the entire Brazilian people considered that as a disaster that can only be erased by winning the trophy at home again even if they won five world cups in the meantime , however once they got the chance to make the Brazilians forget about the maracanazo , another worse event arises after they lost 7-1 to germany which arguably proves that the football in brazil has been on the decline since their world cup win in 2002.
    the whole blame should be on the shoulders of Scolari who really left the most effective and best performed Brazilian players in european leagues in 2013/2014.
    there is no argument that he led brazil to trophy in Korean and japan but at the same time the players that were at his disposal at the time were the best on the planet with their respective clubs. personally i never expected them to lose to germany with that big margin but didn’t expect them to win the trophy too.
    so now it is time to start moving forward and use this huge loss as a motivating factor and never win things before even the tournament kicks off.

    • You’re right, Scolari left some of his best talent off of his team, which is extremely sad and makes me wonder ‘what if?’

      I don’t know if Brazilian soccer has been on the decline as much as Scolari just failed to use the right players. For example, German soccer has been on the incline for the past decade yet they’ve failed to win anything since 96.

  5. After reading through some of the comments I would have to admit that maybe my comments were biased, against Brazil, they do have a talented lineup. I have never been a huge fan of Neymar, for me the best Brazil lineup would be 1998 and 2012. My favourite player being Romario, a rather underrated striker. But there seems to be so much lacking from them this time around. Now that Argentina is through to the final, we shall see how good Germany really is, I believe this will be a decent test of German’s resolve.

  6. yes really romario was one of the best brazilian players ever and he was part of the USA94 Winning side , nowadays the club football is killing the international football specially the world cup due to the long seasons which ultimately leaves the players in fatigue and become exhausted.
    and really the idea of selecting players due to their club profile is a wrong idea for me , players should be picked up just for their performances on the bitch wherever they are playing regardless of which league. look at carlos alberto parriera who was the coach of selecao in 1994 , he picked up Leonardo who was totally unknown to most of the people from the Japanese league and eventually he was the best full back in the world cup until he was sent off for a brutal elbow on a US player and then suspended for the rest of the tournament , brazil should forget about underestimating other footballing nations and should know that most of the European countries are building great teams by focusing on the youth talents while brazil is just living on their previous achievements in the World cup finals.
    six members of the current german team that also beat argentina 4-0 and england 4-1 in south africa 2010 , were from the team which won the under 21 euro in 2009 just a year ealier before the world cup . like muller , ozil, hummels etc.

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