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By Martin Graham | 28th Nov 2022
A bug has hit Brazil’s camp ahead of their Group G clash against Switzerland on Monday. Antony, Lucas Paqueta and Alisson missed a few training sessions with flu-like symptoms as Neymar remains on the sidelines.
Only two teams at the World Cup have lived up to the hype. Pre-tournament favourites France and Brazil both won their opening games, with Les Bleus becoming the first team to make it through to the knockout stage of the World Cup. The shocks and upsets are yet to hit the team, and things seem smooth on both sides.
Brazil has a different story. They won their first match beating Serbia 2-0, but not without casualties. Neymar took a knock that has now officially knocked him out of their next two World Cup games. The Selecao Carnarinho will have to do without him temporarily.
Brazil takes on Switzerland on Monday, with the mental strength of the side that lost the Copa America final to Argentina to be tested, as a few of their players are under the weather.
Fitness woes in Brazil’s World Cup team heighten
Brazil needs to win its next game against Switzerland to seal their place in the next round of the World Cup. The fitness woes on the side have continued to grow as a sickness bug has hit the side.
Following the victory over Serbia, Brazil lost two players. Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar is out of the group stage of the tournament. The Paris Saint-Germain star suffered an ankle injury and was joined on the sidelines by defender Danilo, who will also miss the rest of the group stage.
Tite’s side has more problems. Three more players are also on the sidelines and might miss the game against Switzerland. Antony, Lucas Paqueta and Alisson all sat out training at various points with flu-like symptoms.
Antony missed two sessions over the weekend but was able to play some part in training on Sunday. Paqueta and Alisson were also able to participate in some sessions on Sunday.
Options for Brazil
Antony was one of the options Tite had in mind to replace Neymar, but the current situation means he needs to look elsewhere. Some of those in line to replace Neymar are Rodrygo or Arsenal pair of Gabriel Jesus and Gabriel Martinelli. The prognosis looks good for the PSG forward, as, despite a visibly swollen ankle, he should be fit for the knockout stages.
The injury to Neymar makes it the third World Cup in a row he has suffered an injury during the tournament. In 2014, Neymar was out of the competition in the quarter-final stage with a back injury. In 2018 he came to the World Cup with a foot injury.
Tite also has to worry about Danilo. The injury to the defender was worse than initially thought, with scans on Friday revealing its extent. The replacement for Danilo is likely Brazilian legend Dani Alves. The former Barcelona full-back is in line for his 125th cap for Brazil.
Juventus defender Danilo is also suffering from ankle issues, and his injury is worse than first feared, scans revealed on Friday. His place is likely to be taken by Brazilian legend Dani Alves, who could win his 125th cap.
Brazil faces Switzerland on Monday, with both teams having won their opening game in the group. A further victory for Tite’s side would book their place into the knockout stage.