Rivaldo blames players’ selection for Brazil’s Copa America debacle

Sao Paolo, July 1 (IANS) Brazilian football legend Rivaldo on Wednesday blamed national team head coach Dunga’s selection of players from non-prestigious leagues for their early exit from the Copa America.

Brazil crashed out of the quadrennial competition after they lost to Paraguay in the quarter-finals, sparking criticism about their style of play.
The inclusion of players such as Everton Ribeiro and Diego Tardelli — who play in United Arab Emirates (UAE) and China respectively — have led to the 2002 World Cup winner questioning Dunga’s selection of the squad.
“Nowadays, it seems that any player can be called to the national team. I remember that in 2006, I wasn’t called to the World Cup because I was playing club football in Greece,” former midfielder Rivaldo wrote in his Facebook page.
“This was even though I was rated as the best player of the league on two occasions and it is a much more prestigious league than the ones where some of the current Brazil players are playing.”
The former Barcelona and A.C. Milan star also stated that with the current state of affairs, Brazil will not win another trophy for another 30 years.
“If the state of affairs continues like this, our national team will end up going over 30 years without being champions. Please, can we call up better players because — if we don’t — we will be ashamed again,” Rivaldo, who scored 35 goals in 74 matches for Brazil, said.
“I prefer to stay silent and not say anything, but this time I couldn’t keep quiet because things are really ugly right now as a country,” concluded the 1999 Copa America winner.