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BRAZIL

Brazil manager Diniz says “I have to lower expectations” of Endrick

The Brazil manager tried to calm the water ahead of Brazil’s first game as many people are eager to see Endrick on the pitch.

Update:
The Brazil manager tried to calm the water ahead of Brazil's first game as many people are eager to see Endrick on the pitch.
RICARDO MORAESREUTERS

A huge number of journalists close to the Brazilian national team have asked Fernando Diniz, the manager of the side, to play Endrick from the start against Colombia (November 16 at 7:00 p.m. ET / 4:00 p.m. PT.).

Given the absence of various big names in the squad and the long drought the side have suffered when it comes to finding the net, the manager’s bravery to put the 17-year-old into the lineup has been questioned, with Diniz even being forced to ask for calm during the pre-game press conference.

‘I have to lower expectations of him’

Diniz, of course, was questioned multiple times about Endrick before heading to Barranquilla but the Flamengo coach, who just won the Copa Libertadores, remained cautious in his evaluations on how best to use the Palmeiras forward: “he’s a very special player”, said Diniz, “what he does at just 17-years-old already opens the door for him to a brilliant future and a great trajectory.

However, I have to lower expectations of him. I don’t want him to feel pressured. The best thing we can do is protect him so he doesn’t feel overwhelmed. We have to alleviate the weight on him and emotionally strengthen him to go up against the challenges that await him during his career”, said the coach.

Throughout 2023, Endrick has been a media sensation but he has also suffered the pressure that comes with several periods of a goal scoring drought, but despite his age he has shown huge mental strength that has allowed him to recover his form and reach a sensational vein of form that has led him to Brazil’s senior team for the first time.

Endrick has already trained with the Brazil first team.
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Endrick has already trained with the Brazil first team.Antonio LacerdaEFE

Diniz: Colombia ‘one of the most difficult opponents in South America’

The coach, who replaced Tite after the Qatar World Cup, also assessed the Colombian national team, saying that they have “a team that have gained a lot of importance on the world stage over the last 20 or 30 years, and have become one of the most difficult opponents in South America. They are very well coached and have managed to get good results in the qualifiers. They play very competitively.

On the other hand, Diniz showed some concern about the problems Brazil will face in Barranquilla: “Playing in Barranquilla is always difficult: we will face a lot of heat, massive support from their fans and, also, the strength of the Colombian side, which are a very good team”.

The game between Colombia and Brazil will be played on November 16 with kick off at 7:00 p.m. ET / 4:00 p.m. PT. After that, Brazil play Argentina at the Maracaná on Tuesday 21 November 2023 with kick-off at 7.30 p.m. ET / 4.30 p.m. PT.