Brazil completed an almost immaculate qualification campaign which left them as leaders of CONMEBOL’s qualification phase with 14 wins and three draws, scoring 40 goals and only conceding five. Tite’s line-up is clearly unbalanced with a lacklustre defence where Thiago Silva surprisingly remains ahead of Eder Militao. Alex Sandro’s loss of form leaves the left-back position without an owner. The other big question mark is the No.9, where Tite could go for Roberto Firmino or Gabriel Jesus, or could field Neymar as a false nine to bring Vinicius Junior in on the left.
Brazil will be chasing their first World Cup triumph in two decades when they take to the field in Qatar and we’ll soon be finding out the 26 men tasked with getting them there.
The South American giants go into the 2022 tournament as the top-ranked team in the world and many of the names on the list of manager Tite will be household names playing for some of the biggest club teams in the world.
Tite’s side has won seven straight matches heading into the tournament, and haven’t lost any of their past 15 games.
But the fact remains that the lengthy World Cup drought will weigh on the team given the expectations back home as they go searching for a sixth World Cup title.
Final 26-man Brazil World Cup squad
Tite named his final 26-man squad on Monday, November 7, seven days ahead of the FIFA-imposed deadline of November 14.
The surprise name on the list is 39-year-old Dani Alves, who didn’t have the best of seasons with Pumas UNAM in Mexico.
He’s assumed to be Danilo’s backup at right-back and he was preferred over Tottenham’s Emerson Royal. Alves will be among the oldest players in World Cup history should he take the field in Qatar.
Here’s the final 26-man list.
|GK||23||Ederson||Manchester City (ENG)||29||18|
|DEF||14||Eder Militao||Real Madrid (SPA)||24||23|
|DEF||3||Thiago Silva||Chelsea (ENG)||38||108|
|DEF||16||Alex Telles||Sevilla (SPA)||29||7|
|DEF||13||Dani Alves||Pumas UNAM (MEX)||39||125|
|DEF||6||Alex Sandro||Juventus (ITA)||31||37|
|MID||5||Casemiro||Manchester United (ENG)||30||64|
|MID||17||Bruno Guimaraes||Newcastle United (ENG)||24||8|
|MID||8||Fred||Manchester United (ENG)||29||27|
|MID||7||Lucas Paqueta||West Ham (ENG)||25||34|
|MID||22||Everton Ribeiro||Flamengo (BRA)||33||22|
|FWD||26||Gabriel Martinelli||Arsenal (ENG)||21||3|
|FWD||20||Vinicius Jr.||Real Madrid (SPA)||22||15|
|FWD||19||Antony||Manchester United (ENG)||22||10|
|FWD||21||Rodrygo||Real Madrid (SPA)||21||6|
|FWD||18||Gabriel Jesus||Arsenal (ENG)||25||56|
The most notable absences from the final list are:
- Roberto Firmino (Liverpool)
- Gabriel (Arsenal)
- Gabriel Barbosa (Flamengo)
- Renan Lodi (Nottingham Forest)
- Matheus Cunha (Atletico Madrid)
- Philippe Coutinho (Aston Villa)
- Emerson Royal (Tottenham Hotspur)
- Gerson (Marseille)
- Luiz Henrique (Real Betis)
- Rodinei (Flamengo)
Reports in Brazil indicated in advance that Philippe Coutinho has picked up a right thigh injury that will keep him out for six weeks, thus forcing him to miss out on the World Cup, though his club form may have been enough given his subpar start to 2022/23 with Aston Villa.
Brazil national team stars, strengths & weaknesses
Currently on a seven-game winning run, Brazil have found form at the perfect time heading into the 2022 World Cup.
They are among the leading contenders to win the tournament, and expectations will be sky high back at home.
Big names don’t get much bigger than Neymar and the PSG attacker will head into the World Cup injury-free and in fine form at club level.
This current Brazil team also aren’t short of Premier League stars with the likes of Gabriel Jesus and Richarlison all looking ready to light up in Qatar. A recent Richarlison injury will not keep him out of Qatar, but Aston Villa’s Philippe Coutinho was not as fortunate.
A key element of any successful Brazilian side is the attack and they won’t be lacking in this area for the 2022 World Cup.
Tite has his star-studded side playing some great attacking football and they’ve scored three or more goals in six of their last seven matches leading up to the tournament. Those strikes have been shared around too, with no single player carrying Brazil in the final third.
As with most attack-minded teams, defence inevitably becomes an area of concern and this is the case for Brazil. A lack of pace in their backline leaves them vulnerable to counter-attacks, particularly when their full-backs are caught out of position. (The call-up of Juventus defender Bremer should help this area provided he sees the field.)
Another cause for concern is their recent World Cup record, with Brazil knocked out in the quarter-finals in 2018 and infamously beaten 7-1 by Germany in the 2014 semi-finals. Those results could see doubt once again creep in as they chase redemption in Qatar.
Brazil World Cup group
Brazil have been drawn in Group G alongside Switzerland, Cameroon and Serbia.
The Selecao have only ever failed to escape a World Cup group twice (1930 and 1966) and will be strong contenders to top Group G in 2022.
Should they do that, in the Round of 16 they’d face the runner-up from Group H, which contains Portugal, Ghana, Uruguay and South Korea.
|Thurs, Nov. 24||Switzerland vs. Cameroon||5 a.m.||Al Janoub Stadium|
|Thurs, Nov. 24||Brazil vs. Serbia||2 p.m.||Lusail Stadium|
|Mon, Nov. 28||Cameroon vs. Serbia||5 a.m.||Al Janoub Stadium|
|Mon, Nov. 28||Brazil vs. Switzerland||11 a.m.||Stadium 974|
|Fri, Dec. 2||Cameroon vs. Brazil||2 p.m.||Lusail Stadium|
|Fri, Dec. 2||Serbia vs. Switzerland||2 p.m.||Stadium 974|
Brazil projected starting XI vs. Serbia (4-3-3)
DFs: Danilo — Marquinhos — Thiago Silva — Alex Telles
MFs: Lucas Paqueta — Casemiro — Neymar
FWs: Raphinha — Richarlison — Vinicius Junior
Having been in charge since 2016, Tite has already confirmed that he will leave the Brazil national team after the World Cup in Qatar. He won the Copa America in 2019, but lost the last final against Argentina.
Injuries have prevented him from being at his best in the past few years, but when he’s on form, he’s unstoppable. He’ll soon replace Pele as Brazil’s record goalscorer for the national team.
The quantity and quality of options that they have in attack.
The defence, and in particular the full-backs, don’t live up to the same level that the rest of the squad offers.