Brazil bring big guns for 2018 qualifiers

Aug 10, 2017 - 6:24 PM Brazil's head coach has called up all of the country's biggest stars for World Cup qualifying matches in the coming weeks against Ecuador and Colombia.

Even though Brazil have already booked a berth in the 2018 World Cup in Russia, coach Tite has summoned top players such as Paris Saint-Germain stars Neymar and Dani Alves and Real Madrid's Marcelo and Casemiro.

Brazil, who have reclaimed the top spot in the FIFA World Rankings, will host Ecuador on August 31 in Porto Alegre before travelling to Barranquilla to take on Colombia on September 5.

Brazil's final two qualifying matches will be played in October against Bolivia and Chile.

One surprise on Tite's list was first-time call-up Cassio, a goalkeeper and key member of Brazilian league leaders Corinthians, who are undefeated through 19 games of the season and have conceded just nine goals.

Other unexpected selections were attacking midfielder Luan, who plays for Brazilian club Gremio, and Taison, a key member of Ukrainian side Shakhtar Donetsk.

Brazil have a record of 10 wins, three draws and one loss (33 points) through 14 matches. Their nearest competitors in South American qualifying are Colombia, who sit in second place with 24 points.

Four teams will qualify directly for the World Cup, while the fifth-place squad will advance to a play-off, most likely against New Zealand.

Source: AAP

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