Brazil have announced their squad for the World Cup Finals with two players in the Tottenham squad having an interest in the outcome. Paulinho is included in their provisional 23-man squad but Sandro missed out.
The World Cup Finals has been on the minds of players whose national teams have qualified for the Finals in Brazil since qualification was completed. The hosts have named their squad and Paulinho has been included. When he failed to return to the Spurs team immediately after recovering from the injury which had kept him out at the start of 2014, Paulinho became concerned about the possibility of missing out on selection for the Finals.
Paulinho has been a central figure in the Brazil midfield throughout the season, being a ‘star’ of last summer’s Confederations Cup and in the succession of friendly matches Brazil played as part of their preparation for the finals in their own country for which they had automatic qualification as host nation.
Since making his debut for Brazil in 2011, Paulinho has made 25 appearances and scored 5 goals, including one against England last summer.
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Sandro had harboured ambitions of inclusion in the Brazil squad but injury over the past 18 months has hit him hard and he has missed out. Two years ago Sandro was a regular figure in the Brazil midfield and played in the London Olympics in 2012.
Sandro has played 17 games for Brazil and scored one goal since his debut in 2009. He was one of the listed reserves for the World Cup Finals in 2010.
Injury in January 2013 kept him out for over 8 months and he only made a tentative return to the Tottenham team last autumn in Europa League and Cup games. He was troubled with injury through the season and when omitted from the team against Fulham, in frustration, challenged the manager by tweeting that he wasn’t injured.
From a Tottenham perspective, with the injury worries Sandro has had, it will be good for him to have a rest through the summer and return for a full pre-season training programme to allow him to regain full fitness in preparation for next season. With the Olympics in 2012 he played throughout the summer and with injury last summer, he has missed the opportunity to prepare properly for the start of the past two seasons.
In the coming days more World Cup squads will be announced with the England squad due to be released on Monday.