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Koke to join Chelsea, Podolski eyes escape

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By ESPN Staff

Youthful Brazilian squad to face Ireland

Youngsters Lucas Leiva and Anderson have been named in a youthful Brazil squad to face the Republic of Ireland in Dublin next month.

Brazil coach Dunga named 11 players under the age of 23 in his 22-man squad announced today, with one eye on the Olympic Games in Beijing later this year, including Liverpool's Lucas and Manchester United midfielder Anderson.

Alexandre Pato, 18, who scored on his AC Milan debut earlier this month, has been handed a first call-up to the senior squad, as has Sao Paulo midfielder Richarlyson.

``I named players of Olympic age before,'' said Dunga. ``It's important for them to gain experience in the national team environment.

``The upcoming games will be useful to keep watching the men who can play in Beijing.''

The game against the Republic on February 6 will be Brazil's first match this year. They also face Sweden on March 26 at Arsenal's Emirates Stadium.

Barcelona playmaker Ronaldinho has been left out of the squad as he steps up his recovery from a knee injury.

Brazil squad: Julio Cesar (Internazionale), Renan (Internacional); Maicon (Internazionale), Rafinha (Schalke), Marcelo (Real Madrid), Lucio, Breno (both Bayern Munich), Luisao (Benfica), Alex (Chelsea); Kaka (AC Milan), Gilberto Silva (Arsenal), Hernanes (Sao Paulo), Josue (Wolfsburg), Lucas (Liverpool), Richarlyson (Sao Paulo), Anderson (Man Utd), Thiago Neves (Fluminense), Julio Baptista (Real Madrid); Robinho, Luis Fabiano (both Real Madrid), Rafael Sobis (Betis), Alexandre Pato (AC Milan).