The Neymar that plays for Brazil is definitely different from the one that appears next to Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez at Barcelona.
At the Nou Camp, he is part of the supporting cast but with Brazil, he is the Peacock, who cannot stop flaunting his status.
So with a four-match ban confirmed, Brazil manager, Carlos Dunga, must find a way for his team to win their next match against Venezuela on Sunday or else the Selecao will make a whimperish exit from the 2015 Copa America, taking place in Chile.
The records don’t show a good precedence when Brazil play without their talisman. At the 2014 World Cup, which they hosted, Neymar was injured in their fractious 2-1 quarter final win over Colombia and afterwards, they scored just one goal and conceded 10 in two matches! And in the two matches already played in Chile, Neymar had a hand in the two goals scored against Peru – scoring the first and assisting the second.
Colombia again have played a part in making Neymar lose the plot – though the Brazil captain has himself to blame for not maintaining his cool in the face of adversity.
With Neymar on for 90 minutes, Dunga’s team were under pressure for almost the entirety of the match which they lost 1-0, a result that clearly flattered them as the margin of defeat should have been wider. Brazil had just one shot on target in 90 minutes.
And Brazil, at this tournament have not shown that they are an above average team and the natural flair for which the team came to be known with is sorely missing – a trait that the current manager is not keen to address or put quite simply, is unable to instill.
The Brazil Football Federation will now be thinking seriously of effecting a change with the lackluster manner in which the team has played and could be made to rue the fact that they appointed Dunga – a coach who is not a far departure from the methods of Luis Felipe Scolari, who was relieved of the manager’s job after a disastrous
After the hard-fought 2-1 win over Peru in their first match of the tournament, Dunga set a record for being the first manager of the national team to have won his first 10 matches in charge but if he
loses to Venezuela, he may also have the record of having the shortest
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