Selecao boss to rest starters for last group clash

Selecao boss to rest starters for last group clash

Cameroon need a win to have any chance of advancing to next stage of tournament

Brazil players attend a training session ahead of today's final Group G match against Cameroon. (AFP photo)
Brazil players attend a training session ahead of today's final Group G match against Cameroon. (AFP photo)

DOHA: Brazil coach Tite is expected to rotate his World Cup squad for their final Group G match against Cameroon on Friday, with a view to keeping some players fresh for a likely last-16 match on Monday if they finish top of their group.

With their ticket already booked for the knockout stages after two wins, Brazil can rest players and wait for the return of others including Neymar, Alex Sandro and Danilo from injury.

Juventus left back Alex Sandro suffered a hip injury in Brazil's 1-0 win over Switzerland, while Paris St-Germain forward Neymar and Juventus right back Danilo picked up ankle injuries in the opening 2-0 win over Serbia. Brazil team doctor Rodrigo Lasmar has given no specific timetable for their return.

Several Brazil players were also ill on Sunday, including midfielder Lucas Paqueta who missed Saturday's training session and was substituted off at half-time in the game against Switzerland.

According to Brazilian television station Globo, Tite has already told the squad that he plans to give some players their first start at a World Cup match when they meet the African side.

Cameroon still have a chance of qualifying.

But Brazil are World Cup favourites for a reason, and have a bench packed with players like Manchester City goalkeeper Ederson, Manchester United winger Antony, Arsenal's attacking duo Gabriel Jesus and Gabriel Martinelli, Newcastle United Bruno Guimaraes and Liverpool's Fabinho.

Cameroon will face Brazil without their goalkeeper Andre Onana, who has been dropped from the country's squad for disciplinary reasons.

Brazil will top their group if they draw or win. If they lose and Switzerland win against Serbia, top spot will be decided by goal difference.

The Swiss are second on three points, two ahead of Serbia and Cameroon who have one point apiece. Both need to win to have any chance of progressing in second place, which would be decided by goal difference.

Yellow the new black

In a yellow-and-green outfit with matching shoes, eye glitter and fingernails, Julia Barbosa is on her way to watch Brazil's big match in a Sao Paulo bar.

But she looks like she could be strutting her stuff on a runway modelling Brazil's latest fashion trend: World Cup style.

As the five-time champs wage their campaign to bring home their sixth title, the 24-year-old marketing student is waging a campaign of her own.

"I'm going to have a different look for every match," Barbosa says proudly, posing for pictures in the outfit she bought for Brazil's opener on Thursday.

Next up, she says: a bikini top and shorts in the colours of the flag, which have flooded streets, shop windows and online stores in Brazil as the football-mad nation starts its World Cup party.

Some Brazilians have eschewed yellow and green in recent years, which were associated with outgoing President Jair Bolsonaro and his far-right base.

But with the World Cup now under way and Bolsonaro on his way out after losing last month's elections to leftist president-elect Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, fans are re-embracing "Brazilcore," a streetwear fashion heavy on symbols of national pride and the yellow, green and blue of the flag.

Pop superstar Anitta and an army of influencers on social media have pushed the trend -- redefining the symbolism of yellow and green.

The trend "aims to reclaim pride in the national colours, giving all Brazilians a sense of belonging, regardless of their politics," said Katia Lamarca of the European Design Institute (IED) in Sao Paulo.

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