Dani Alves earns Brazil recall for World Cup qualifiers
May 15, 2021
Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) May 15: Former Barcelona right-back Dani Alves has returned to Brazil's squad for FIFA 2022 World Cup qualifiers against Ecuador and Paraguay, the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) said on Friday.
The 24-man squad included uncapped Benfica defender Lucas Verissimo while head coach Tite also recalled Flamengo striker Gabriel Barbosa, Liverpool midfielder Fabinho, Manchester United midfielder Fred and Juventus defender Alex Sandro.
Alves has not played for Brazil since a 1-1 friendly draw with Nigeria in October 2019. The 38-year-old been in impressive form for Sao Paulo this year, having reverted to his familiar defensive role under new manager Hernan Crespo after a period in central midfield.
"Daniel Alves ... is one of our pillars for his high [performance] level, longevity, the good form he's shown with his club and his history within the national team," Tite told a news conference.
"Qualifiers in particular have unique physical and technical demands. Daniel helps us there and brings great leadership."
As expected, the Brazil squad also features star forward Neymar, his Paris Saint-Germain teammate Marquinhos, Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson and Real Madrid midfielder Casemiro.
Brazil will play Ecuador in Porto Alegre on June 4 and Paraguay in Asuncion four days later. The five-time world champions currently lead the South American zone World Cup qualifying standings with four wins from as many matches.
Tite said his squad would not necessarily remain the same for the Copa America, to be played in Colombia and Argentina from June 13 to July 10.
"For now we are only thinking about these two matches because we can't afford to lose our focus. We'll worry about the Copa America later," he said.
Following is the Brazil squad:
Goalkeepers: Alisson (Liverpool), Ederson (Manchester City), Weverton (Palmeiras)
Defenders: Dani Alves (Sao Paulo), Danilo, Alex Sandro (Juventus), Renan Lodi (Atletico Madrid), Eder Militao (Real Madrid), Lucas Verissimo (Benfica), Marquinhos (Paris Saint-Germain), Thiago Silva (Chelsea)
Midfielders: Casemiro (Real Madrid), Douglas Luiz (Aston Villa), Everton Ribeiro (Flamengo), Fabinho (Liverpool), Fred (Manchester United), Lucas Paqueta (Lyon)
Forwards: Everton (Benfica), Roberto Firmino (Liverpool), Gabriel Barbosa (Flamengo), Gabriel Jesus (Manchester City), Neymar (Paris Saint-Germain), Richarlison (Everton), Vinicius Junior (Real Madrid).