The 2014 Brazil World Cup squad has been announced, with Chelsea’s David Luiz, Ramires, Oscar and Willian all making Luiz Felipe Scolari’s provisional 23-man selection, but there is no place for Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho or Lucas Leiva.
The hosts Brazil are among the first to announce their squad for this summer’s tournament, and can boast a particularly mean group of defenders in their midst.
Former Manchester City man Maicon makes the squad as back-up to Barcelona’s Dani Alves, while Chelsea’s David Luiz will fight it out with Bayern Munich’s Dante for a place next to captain Thiago Silva of PSG in the heart of the defence.
Tottenham’s Paulinho, who has recently been strongly linked with a move to Stamford Bridge, joins fellow defensive-minded midfielders Luiz Gustavo, Man City’s Fernandinho, and Chelsea man Ramires in a powerful central midfield.
Liverpool attacker Coutinho’s absence was somewhat expected, but considering his good form of late, there will be many wondering why the 21-year-old wasn’t considered. His teammate Lucas meanwhile has been struggling with injury in the latter part of the season, but will still be disappointed not to have received a call-up.
With Neymar expected to spearhead the attack, Chelsea pair Oscar and Willian will surely start around the Barcelona superstar, with former City striker Jo and Fluminense striker Fred coming in as target man options.
There is no room for AC Milan pair Kaka and Robinho, and also former Spurs target Leandro Damiao, who has struggled for form this year.
Goalkeepers: Julio Cesar (Toronto FC, on loan from QPR), Jefferson (Botafogo), Victor (Atletico Mineiro).
Defenders: Marcelo (Real Madrid), Daniel Alves (Barcelona), Maicon (AS Roma), Maxwell and Thiago Silva (both Paris St-Germain), David Luiz (Chelsea), Dante (Bayern Munich), Henrique (Napoli).
Midfielders: Paulinho (Tottenham Hotspur), Ramires (Chelsea), Willian (Chelsea), Oscar (Chelsea), Hernanes (Inter Milan), Luiz Gustavo (Wolfsburg), Fernandinho (Manchester City).
Forwards: Bernard (Shakhtar Donetsk), Neymar (Barcelona), Fred (Fluminense), Jo (Atletico Mineiro), Hulk (Zenit St Petersburg).
What do you think of the Brazil squad? Are they favourites for the World Cup this summer? Should Coutinho or Lucas have been called-up?