Brazilian newspapers have reported Dunga is showing the stress of managing the world’s most high profile football team and his latest comments show him on the defensive – and how the pressure is starting to get to him.
Dunga told reporters that Brazil is not dependent on Robinho, in spite of the fact that the Real Madrid player has scored all four of Brazil’s goals in the Copa America so far.
“Robinho hasn’t been Brazil’s only player,” Dunga said. “Those who watched the game when we scored three goals saw the penalty won by Vagner Love and Vagner Love’s great pass. Obviously Robinho is an intelligent player with great skill but he’s not the be all and end all to Brazil.”
Dunga also rejected the notion that he is turning Brazil into a defensive bore by playing three holding midfielders in a line of four. Last night’s inclusion of Sao Paulo’s Josue alongside Gilberto Silva and Mineiro, with former Arsenal star Julio Baptista pushed further forward, stripped his midfield of creativity and it seemed to work: Not only did Brazil win but Josue won the man of the match award from journalists.
But it wasn’t pretty and Dunga said the changes were necessary to reinforce the marking in the middle of the park.
“We picked Josue because we needed a stronger marker in the middle to fight for loose balls and help with marking,” he said. “But that doesn’t mean that we were defensive. On the contrary, we did that so we could be more attacking, more than in the previous matches, because we got forward in numbers.”
Dunga said he has not decided on his line up for Saturday’s quarter final match against Chile.