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  • BRAZIL SOCCER

    Brazil will have Neymar in friendly against Saudis

    11 de octubre de 2018

    Sao Paulo, Oct 11 (efe-epa).- Brazil will have the offensive trio of Neymar, Gabriel Jesus and Philippe Coutinho in the lineup when it takes on Saudi Arabia this week in a friendly in Riyadh.

    The three Brazilian forwards will take the field on Friday at a time when fans are still questioning their performance at the World Cup in Russia, where the South American squad was handed a 2-1 loss in the quarterfinals by Belgium.

    Neymar, who plays for Paris Saint-Germain (PSG), had just recovered from surgery and was criticized for his antics during the World Cup, with some questioning his "emotional stability."

    Gabriel Jesus, a striker for Manchester City, was the youngest player on Brazil's roster and failed to score a goal during the World Cup.

    Philippe Coutinho, a midfielder for FC Barcelona, tried to carry Brazil's offense, but he was unable to do it alone.

    The situation seems to be improving for Brazil in the wake of its disappointing World Cup performance.

    Neymar, now a permanent national team captain, is playing well for PSG, while Philippe Coutinho is performing at his usual high standard in La Liga.

    Gabriel Jesus is the only one of Brazil's projected scoring trio to be struggling.

    National team coach Tite is hoping that the three players will be the cornerstone for Brazil's run to a title at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

    Brazil will host the 2019 Copa America, giving the team an intermediate goal to aim for as it prepares for Qatar with a series of progressively tougher friendlies.

    The South Americans beat Team USA 2-0 and rolled to a 5-0 victory over El Salvador in their first post-World Cup friendlies.

    Brazil and Saudi Arabia will meet on Friday at King Saud University Stadium in Riyadh.