Football News

Scolari proud of Brazil improvement

Created on 28 Jun., 2013 12:48 AM GMT

Brazil coach Luiz Felipe Scolari believes the South American nation is getting its groove back on the pitch.

After seeing their FIFA ranking slip as low as 22nd heading into the Confederations Cup, pundits in Brazil were left to fear a huge letdown with their hosting of the World Cup looming large next year.

"We are earning back the history of the Brazil team," Scolari said.

"But we still have a long way to go to say we are as good as the top four or five teams in the world."

Scolari's young squad have a semi-final against Uruguay, on the back of some promising form in the group stages that saw them score nine times.

Each time so far this tournament, Neymar has been named man of the match, having scored in all three of their games.

Unfortunately, having got things right on the field, Brazil's woes have come off it with large-scale protests putting the remainder of the tournament in doubt.

Tens of thousands of Brazilians were protesting several things, including higher taxes to pay for next year's World Cup.

But Scolari said unity was the only way forward for both their football team and their society.

"This is a crucial moment for the Brazilian team, but we need to take one more step forward, to defeat Uruguay and reach the final," Scolari said.

"Brazilians have been with us, but everything we have done to build a better country will not be in vain if we can keep this run up.

"We must find a way of working together, I repeat together. Not fighting with each other. Maybe in five or 10 years' time we can have a better country."

Scolari claimed the side had improved thoroughly since he took over the reins yet again earlier this year.

"We are better in comparison to February when we started in my first match. We have a good foundation," he said.

"In this tournament we have had tough matches and the group has improved and is more self confident.

"We know the managers of the other teams have always respected us because Brazil has always been a great team, but maybe they weren't 100 percent sure we would be strong this time."

Striker Fred, who struck a brace against Italy, said he is concerned by the movements on the Brazil streets.

"The forecast is for a very strong rally," he said.

"That makes me worried. We asked the people to be united and give only joy for at least 90 minutes of this game.

"But they are fair claims. All I can hope is that they are peaceful and there are no clashes with the police."

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