Scolari: Brazil players running out of time to secure World Cup place

Scolari: Brazil players running out of time to secure World Cup place

Luiz Felipe Scolari has warned Brazilian stars playing around the world that they are running out of time to secure a spot in his final squad for the World Cup next summer.The showpiece event may still be 10 months away yet the Selecao coach insists he is already finalizing his plans & is unlikely to make many changes in the final months leading up to the tournament.Scolari spoke to the media after announcing his 22-man squad to face Australia & Portugal in September, with Ramires & Maicon sealing returns to the national side.”The base of players that won the Confederations Cup will be retained for next summer. The players were astonishing in that tournament & I will only make a few changes for the World Cup,” he said.”The door will never be closed for any player who shines but, in principle, I will have chosen my 23 players for World Cup by March. These two games against Australia & Portugal could be my last chance to observe certain players before deciding who should go to World Cup.”Scolari said he was looking forward to the two games – the first of which is against Australia at home before the clash against his former charges Portugal in the United States – after the side suffered a disappointing defeat to Switzerland last time out.”In these friendlies we have a chance to test a few players out,” he went on. “They may not necessarily be new players yet it is an opportunity to alter things around & have a look at some of them playing in different positions.”Australia are a satisfactory team & will be a satisfactory test. They already qualified for World Cup, so we want to face them. Facing Portugal on September 10 will be very strange for me & for [assistant coach] Flavio Murtoza. I have very special affection towards this country.”Discussing specific selections in his squad, the Selecao coach insisted the dispute with Ramires was now in the past & said he was pleased to welcome back Roma fullback Maicon.“I know Ramires had his problems with CBF president Jose Maria Marin,” added Scolari. “But when I showed Marin my squad list yesterday he accepted the fact that Ramires is on it. We have solved the problems we had with Ramires & he deserves to be with us. I have been watching him recently & he has been doing very well. “Maicon has always been tremendous for Brazil. He is at Roma now & I want to watch him in these two matches. I’m pleased to donate him the chance – he is another player who deserves it.”

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