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Duarte: Reasons to cheer, jeer Brazil


Duarte: Five key questions for Brazil

 By Tim Vickery

South America bringing strong squads to Copa America Centenario

The ESPN FC crew debate whether playing in the Olympics over Copa America makes sense for Neymar and Brazil.

Coach Jose Pekerman, as ever, has kept his cards close to his chest and Colombia's provisional Copa America squad of 40 has, at the time of writing, yet to see the light of day.

It will make for interesting reading. How will the Colombians reconcile the Copa with their participation in the Rio Olympics? Last week it was announced that Olympic coach Carlos Restrepo will be on the staff during the Copa. Is this a hint that Pekerman is taking a young squad to the USA in June? Time will tell.


ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

What's trending: Jamie Vardy accepts charge, PFA reveals Team of the Year

Anthony Richardson recaps another huge weekend in the Premier League, where Jamie Vardy carded for diving, while Aston Villa were finally relegated.
Barcelona head coach Luis Enrique was thrilled with Barcelona's 'spectacular' 8-0 win over Deportivo La Coruna.
Luis Suarez is the first player to have a hand in 7 goals in a La Liga game in the 21st Century.

Here are the latest stories from Thursday.

LEICESTER: Jamie Vardy has accepted the FA's charge of improper conduct and has requested a personal hearing before an announcement of a possible further suspension.

- Roy Hodgson does not believe Jamie Vardy dived against West Ham and can understand the angry outburst that could see the England striker miss yet more of Leicester's title run-in.

PREMIER LEAGUE: The PFA Team of the Year features four players each from Leicester and Tottenham, but Arsenal's...

 By Tim Vickery

Barcelona, Brazil fight over Neymar as Dunga stresses for his long-term future

ESPN FC's Shaka Hislop doesn't necessarily believe Neymar moving to PSG is in the cards this summer.
Neymar is crucial to Brazil's plans this summer but Barca will fight them over where and how much he plays.

Even as Brazil find form, there is trouble ahead as Neymar finds himself in the middle of a tug of war between club and country. Barcelona have made their position clear. They only want him to play one of this summer's tournaments, either the Copa Centenario in the U.S. in June or the Olympics in Brazil in August. They are under no obligation to release the player for the latter competition as it's not a FIFA tournament and so if Brazil want Neymar for the Olympics (which they do), they will have...

Brazil's international break, World Cup qualifying full of questions

The ESPN FC crew discuss Brazil's draw with Paraguay and the absence of Thiago Silva.

So how bad was the sixth round of CONMEBOL World Cup qualifying for Brazil? It's difficult not to look at the table and cringe.

After Tuesday night's 2-2 draw against Paraguay in Asuncion, the Selecao are sixth in the table and if the tournament finished at this point, they would be out of the World Cup for the first time in their history. Luckily, the league format system guarantees another 12 matches; in theory, more than enough games for Dunga's men to recover from a shaky start in their...

 By Rory Smith

Ronaldo deserves more credit as one of the game's greatest players

Ronaldo inspires the current generation, but is he too often forgotten when we consider the game's greatest players?

Romelu Lukaku was just starting to tire when the subject came up. The Belgian striker had been sitting in a little ante-room at Everton's training ground for a little more than half an hour being peppered with questions. Where does his future lie? Has this been a frustrating season? How much better can he get?

He is a good talker, Lukaku, bright and eloquent, honest and open without ever being blunt. But half an hour is a long time for anyone to talk about themselves; and besides, footballers tend...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

What's trending: Neville sacked, Messi hits 50 for Argentina, U.S. hit back

ESPN FC's Bob Ley and Kasey Keller share their takeaways from the USMNT's 4-0 thrashing of Guatemala in Columbus, Ohio.

Here are the latest stories from Wednesday.

VALENCIA: The Spanish club have sacked Gary Neville as manager. The Englishman took over in December but won just three out of 16 league games. In all competitions, Neville's record was 10 wins, seven draws and 11 defeats.

ARGENTINA: Lionel Messi has become just the second Argentina player in history to score 50 international goals after netting against Bolivia on Wednesday. Messi, 28, struck in the 30th minute of the 2018 World Cup qualifier at the...