2010 FIFA World Cup: Brazil Aim To Win With Steel Instead of Style

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2010 FIFA World Cup: Brazil Aim To Win With Steel Instead of Style
Jamie McDonald/Getty Images

When Dunga lifted the World Cup trophy back in 1994, he was the enforcer of the side. The defensive midfielder would sit and wait before anticipating his opponent's next move and beating him to the ball.

Sixteen years later and he's back. This time as a coach. But he hasn't lost any of his competitive spirit which was evident through a playing career that included spells in Italy, Germany, and Japan.

His side aren't your typical selecao though. They are structured, demonstrative, and love to attack on the break.

Not what we have come to expect from the country that is so often described as having the sexiest football players in the world.

But do not fear, the creators of Joga Binito are still very good.

Dunga has replaced the likes of Ronaldinho and Diego with Kleberson and Josue, bringing a stability to the midfield.

In his squad of 23 for South Africa, he has included five defensive midfielders. Unheard of in Brazilian football.

Brazil, though, do look more balanced for the changes, and they have a platform to build from in midfield; the likes of Felipe Melo and Gilberto Silva sitting back, and allowing the fullbacks Maicon and Michel Bastos—not to mention Dani Alves when he gets a chance—to fly down the wings and support Kaka, and Robinho.

So will the steely Brazil win their sixth World Cup?

Well, they have a very good chance.

Dunga has a firm grip on his squad, and there doesn't seem to be any of the scandals we have come to expect in the last decade. No players out partying all night, no in-fighting, nor even Brazilian legends giving their highly revered, but usually wide of the mark opinions.

The likes of Ronaldinho, Alexandre Pato, and Adriano have been cast aside by the coach in the last couple of years.

But this leads me to the one problem they may encounter during the latter stages of the tournament.

The three players mentioned above may have had their personal, injury, and performance problems in the last couple of years, but when you look at the four strikers picked by Dunga you'd be forgiven for thinking he has missed a trick.

Luis Fabiano, Nilmar, Julio Baptista, and Grafite are the four who have been chosen for South Africa.

All four good players in their own right; Fabiano being the only truly world class forward among them.

If he becomes injured, who they going to put in his place?

Nilmar—a completely different player, thus needing to change their style?

Julio Baptista—a forward with limited ability, who hasn't had much playing time of late?

Or...

Grafite—again, a player with limited ability who has only hit the headlines when into his thirties?

Who knows what he'd do?

Surely Brazilian fans would rather see Adriano replace an injured Fabiano. I know this is a lot of ifs and buts, but it seems to make sense.

Otherwise Dunga possesses a very, very good team.

Julio Cesar is one of the best 'keepers in the world today.

Maicon, Lucio, Juan, and Michel Bastos in defence.

Melo, Silva, Kaka, Robinho, and possibly Elano in a five-man midfield.

If he does return to Rio with the World Cup aloft—which would be his last act as national team manager—they may need to consider a name change...

Dunga in Portuguese meaning dopey.

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Brazil (National Football)

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