Ending a lowly fifth, Brazil’s event revealed a decline of their Underneath-20 soccer.
Tim Vickery’s Notes From South America: Brazil Wrestle In South American Underneath-20 Championships
Eight years in the past Neymar and Lucas Moura shone for Brazil within the South American Underneath-20 Championships. However they missed the World Cup on the degree as a result of they have been with the senior squad for the Copa America. And so the stage was set for Oscar, Phillippe Coutinho and Casemiro to seize among the glory as Brazil have been topped Underneath-20 world champions in Colombia.
Since then, nonetheless, the nation’s report in Underneath-20 soccer has been dismal. This yr’s South American Underneath-20 Championships, held in Chile, got here to a conclusion on Sunday. Ecuador received the title, adopted by Argentina, Uruguay and Colombia. These groups will take the continent’s 4 slots within the World Cup, happening in Poland this Might and June. Brazil completed fifth. They miss out – for the second consecutive time and the third within the final 4.
A ultimate day 1-Zero win over Argentina restores a little bit morale. However Brazil wanted a 3 aim margin – a process that at all times appeared past a crew that managed simply 6 targets in 9 video games.
The occasional failure is just to be anticipated. The event occurs each two years, and there are sure to be oscillations in high quality between one group of kids and the subsequent. However three failures in 4, stretching again to 2013, begins to appear like a sample.
This doesn’t imply that good gamers are now not being produced. The 2013 aspect included the likes of Fred and Felipe Anderson. Richarlison and Lucas Paqueta have been colleagues within the 2017 squad. And the present group contains some names who will certainly be capable of shrug off this disappointment; attacking midfielder Rodrygo was an enormous disappointment in Chile. Even so, he joins Actual Madrid in the course of the yr. Barcelona have picked up robust proper again Emerson, and will likely be loaning him to Betis. Busy midfielder Marcos Antonio will transfer from Estoril in Portugal to Shakhtar Donetsk. And Phelipe Megiolaro was in all probability the excellent goalkeeper on present in Chile.
Brazil’s downside, then is definitely much less one among names, extra one among concepts.
Their decline at Underneath-20 degree might be seen as each relative and absolute.
There was a common rise in requirements. This can be a spin off from the change launched in 1996, some of the vital within the historical past of South American soccer. The swap to the marathon ‘one large group’ format of qualifiers for the senior World Cup was massively important. It introduced the lesser nations the kind of calendar that European nationwide groups take as a right; common aggressive video games, assured revenue, the possibility to rent higher coaches and preserve a crew collectively.
This has now filtered all the way down to the youth ranks. Nations have seen the significance of the Underneath-20 aspect as a conveyor belt by means of to the senior ranks. They invested extra money and time in preparation – and the outcomes have been clear from this event in Chile. From the viewpoint of glowing attacking soccer, revealing a technology of pure, instinctive abilities, the event was a convincing failure. However the defending – each by way of collective organisation and of particular person high quality – was spectacular. Groups have turn into tougher to beat.
Brazil, in the meantime, seem to have stood nonetheless.
Of their, extremely profitable, youth growth work, Uruguay make a degree of making an attempt to establish gamers with the pace of motion, thought and technical execution to outlive in high degree soccer. In different phrases, they aren’t aiming to provide gamers for his or her home sport.
However Brazil’s Underneath-20 groups, and the present one is an instance, are stuffed with the vices of the nation’s modern membership sport. Specifically, the crew incorporates a pair of gangling centre backs who supply little building from deep – thus necessitating, till the panic stations of the ultimate sport, a specialist holding midfielder to sit down in entrance and shield. The fluidity of the crew’s passing actions is thus instantly restricted. This can be a widespread function of Brazilian membership soccer – as is the presence, in huge attacking areas, of some whose solely thought is to cost ahead in a straight line, additionally faithfully reproduced by the Underneath-20s in Chile.
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The excuse is likely to be trotted out that issues would have been totally different had the likes of Vinicius Junior and Paulinho been launched by Actual Madrid and Bayer Leverkeusen respectively. Maybe. However their presence wouldn’t alter the basic construction of the aspect, and, anyway, virtually all of the groups had vital gamers lacking for one purpose or one other.
Higher, absolutely, to embrace the catastrophe. Failure is usually a vital a part of success. Possibly, for instance, the Underneath-20 travails two years in the past of Richarlison and Lucas Paqueta labored for the perfect, keeping off complacency at an vital second. Maybe after three failures in 4, the time has come for Brazil to have an entire rethink about their strategy to Underneath-20 soccer.
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