Even though they registered a rather impressive 2-0 win over Serbia, Brazil were hit by a huge blow as Neymar had to leave the pitch injured. The PSG forward has a knock on his ankle, and is expected to miss all games in the group stages.
And while it is a huge absence, Brazil are no short of options. They have incredible attacking depth, with the likes of Gabriel Martinelli, Gabriel Jesus, Antony, and Rodrygo coming on as substitutes.
With Neymar injured, Tite has enough replacements, and if reports from MARCA are to be believed, Rodrygo is the leading option to take up Neymar’s no. 10 role. He is not, however, the only option.
Tite could move Lucas Pacqueta to attacking midfield, with one of Fred or Bruno Guimares coming in to form the double pivot with Casemiro. The former was the first one to come on vs Serbia, while the latter remained as an unused substitute.
The Brazilian coach rates Rodrygo very highly, as has been reported, and the final decision on his role will be made during the two training sessions ahead of the Brazil vs Switzerland game.
Rodrygo played as a second striker-cum-10 for a few games during his Santos stint, and will not be a tourist to the role.
Further, he has been in rather impressive goalscoring form this season, with four goals and assists each to his name in the league, which means he can recreate a majority of Neymar’s threat in the same position.
Real Madrid maintain full confidence in Turkish starlet despite injury woes
Arda Guler’s Real Madrid stint has not gotten off to the start he would have hoped to have given the expectation that preceded the transfer.
Having joined in the summer after Real Madrid outbid their competition to win him over from Fenerbahce for a 20-million-euro fee, buzz was high as the winger was expected to slot into the team quite seamlessly, albeit on a rotational basis.
Unfortunately for the 18-year-old, he has been constantly marred by injuries since completing the move.
Reports have stated that after Guler picked up his third injury since his move, Real Madrid have been concerned and want to take things slow with the player to ensure he is fit as soon as possible after an injury to his quadriceps this time.
The Turk is yet to make his competitive debut for the club, and Real Madrid even sacked their medical chief in November, in light of their injury crises since the beginning of the season.
No loan deal for Guler
However, according to Fabrizio Romano in a recent YouTube video, he states that Madrid maintain full trust and patience in the youngster.
Despite his bad luck with injuries, the latest of which he is scheduled to return from after Christmas, the Galacticos have no intention of loaning out Guler to Turkish clubs despite lots of speculation of them doing so of late.
Romano states that Madrid remain firm on not shaking things up too much with the squad, and they want to keep their roster stable, including Arda Guler.
They want to extend their full support and protection to the player as he aims to return to full fitness and finally make his bow for Madrid either by the end of this month or in 2024.