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Mano builds for the future
by Paul Kennedy, September 23rd, 2010 5:25PM

TAGS:  brazil


[BRAZIL] For host Brazil, the road to the 2014 World Cup leads through, well, London. Its preparations begin in earnest next month with a week-long camp in Rio -- opponents still TBD -- and Coach Mano Menezes has called up many of Brazil's young stars whose big test could be the 2012 Olympics. One player who won't be camp: Santos striker Neymar, about whom Mano says, "We will leave these recent problems away from the national team."

Neymar was recently suspended for insulting his since-fired coach and teammates at Santos.

"It's important to send a message of what we want for the national team," added Mano, who insists the 18-year-old striker will be welcomed back if he plays well.

"What will bring players to the national team is their performance on the field," he said. "Neymar's return depends on him. I hope this is only a phase and that he once again impresses us with his talent."

Neymar aside, many of Brazil's top young players have been called into camp, including Neto, Andre, Alexandre Pato, Giuliano, Philippe Coutinho and Sandro. They are all eligible as under-23 players for the 2012 Olympics.

In an odd format, South American qualifying for the 2011 Under-20 World Cup in Colombia will also serve as qualifying for the 2012 Olympics.

Of these six players, only Philippe Coutinho, Inter Milan's 18-year-old midfielder, is also eligible to take part in qualifying, which will be held in Peru next January.

Just five 2010 World Cup players will be in October camp: Daniel Alves, Nilmar, Ramires, Robinho and Thiago Silva.

Brazil Roster:
Goalkeepers: Victor (Gremio), Jefferson (Botafogo), Neto (Atletico Paranaense).
Defenders: Adriano (Barcelona), Andre Santos (Fenerbahce), Daniel Alves (Barcelona), Mariano (Fluminense), Alex (Chelsea), David Luiz (Benfica), Rever (Atletico Mineiro), Thiago Silva (AC Milan).
Midfielders: Carlos Eduardo (Rubin Kazan), Elias (Corinthians), Giuliano (Internacional), Lucas (Liverpool), Philippe Coutinho (Inter Milan), Ramires (Chelsea), Sandro (Tottenham), Wesley (Werder Bremen).
Strikers: Alexandre Pato (Milan), Andre (Dynamo Kiev), Nilmar (Villarreal), Robinho (AC Milan).

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