Updates from Wednesday, July 9
Luiz Felipe Scolari spoke again on Wednesday after Brazil's 7-1 loss to Germany and refused to leave the position in the face of fierce criticism (via Dan Roan of the BBC):
Scolari holding press conference - refuses to quit - says he'll take stock & have talks with CBF after 3rd/4th play off & end of World Cup— Dan Roan (@danroan) July 9, 2014
BBC Sport had comment from the Brazilian Football Confederation following the announcement:
Brazilian Football Confederation says in a statement: "Scolari and his entire coaching staff deserve our respect and gratitude."— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) July 14, 2014
An apology was definitely in order from Brazil manager Luiz Felipe Scolari following his side's 7-1 loss to Germany in Tuesday's World Cup semifinal match.
Scolari took responsibility for the Selecao's poor performance, which will go down as one of the worst in World Cup history. Sam Borden of The New York Times highlighted the key points Scolari made in his post-match press conference:
Scolari: "To the people: First of all, please excuse us for this negative mistake."— Sam Borden (@SamBorden) July 8, 2014
Scolari: "The catastrophic result can be shared with the whole group ... but the results, the person responsible, is me."— Sam Borden (@SamBorden) July 8, 2014
Scolari: "We've lost. I was the one who made the choices."— Sam Borden (@SamBorden) July 8, 2014
Scolari: "If I were to think of my life ... I think it was the worst day of my life."— Sam Borden (@SamBorden) July 8, 2014
Scolari: "I'm going to be remembered probably that I lost 7-1. But that was a risk I knew I was taking."— Sam Borden (@SamBorden) July 8, 2014
Jack Lang of the Daily Mirror relayed Scolari's praise for Germany, in which he discussed the indomitable nature of the opponent:
BBC Sport's Phil McNulty weighed in on how well the Germans fared but also accentuated how disappointing this was for Brazil:
Brazil 1 Germany 7. Magnificent Germany but embarrassment for a proud football country such as this one.— Phil McNulty (@philmcnulty) July 8, 2014
Playing as hosts brought with it the pressure to pull through for a victory. The Selecao were without their best attacking threat in Neymar and their defense's captain in Thiago Silva, but even their presence likely would not have been enough to avoid such a collective meltdown.
Which factor deserves the most blame for Brazil's loss to Germany?
Scolari's counterpart, Germany's Joachim Low, is a reputed tactician whose attack put together a peerless effort and was relentless for 90 minutes. It was also such a stark contrast to the haplessness with which Brazil played on the back line, which can be pinned on its boss.
Brazil players huddled in the middle of the pitch after the blowout defeat amid boos and disapproving whistles from the native fans. Beyond just the fans, even the team will be hard-pressed to support Scolari as the long-term manager moving forward following this crushing blowout.
As successful as Scolari has been in the World Cup throughout his managerial career, it's human nature to emphasize the negatives over a myriad of positives. Scolari even acknowledged that he'll be remembered more for Tuesday's loss than anything he's accomplished in the past. That hurts his prospects moving forward and in preparation for the 2018 World Cup.
It will be interesting to see how Brazil responds in the third-place consolation match against the loser of Argentina and the Netherlands. If the Selecao can bounce back and put forth a respectable showing, perhaps Scolari's job security won't be as tenuous.