Neymar impresses Tite in role as Brazil captain



Posted Tuesday, November 20, 2018 by PA

Neymar impresses Tite in role as Brazil captain

Brazil boss Tite has praised Neymar’s maturity since handing the Paris St Germain forward the captaincy.

Neymar has had the armband since the World Cup and will be skipper against Cameroon in Milton Keynes on Tuesday.

He scored the winner from the spot in Friday’s 1-0 win over Uruguay at the Emirates Stadium.

Neymar was criticised for play-acting during the summer’s tournament in Russia, but Tite believes being skipper has helped him.

He said: “This isn’t a prize, it’s a responsibility. I wanted him to be more open with the press and grow. I’m happy with how things have turned out.

“In the dressing room he’s a character, on the field he is a leader. The other day when he did his press conference he came with his son. That wasn’t forced, it was to show he has a human side.

“That’s important, when you are captain, how to project yourself. I think it’s certainly been a success so far.”

Liverpool’s Roberto Firmino will partner Neymar at Stadium MK, with Tite keen to give the 27-year-old more game time.

He added: “Roberto Firmino is still a new player in the national team and so it’s only fair to give him his chance to get used to that position and to create his understanding with the players around him.”

Cameroon will be captained by Brighton’s Gaetan Bong and boss Clarence Seedorf feels it is important to rotate the armband.

“It was a heavy load for any player to be captain. We wanted to show all players are important and there’s more than one leader,” said the former AC Milan and Real Madrid midfielder.

“It’s about the team. By giving it to those who haven’t worn it, it now means they are one of the leaders of the group.

“More importantly it has taken away the pressure from the captaincy. The first thing is about team, not to have one or two players because they stand out.”

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