The burden of the yellow shirt has typically hung heavy on the shoulders of Brazil at World Cups.
It definitely felt that method 4 years in the past, when a quarterfinal defeat by hosts France noticed ahead Geyse sob uncontrollably on the turf and goalkeeper Barbara dumbstruck, sitting in opposition to her publish.
After a 4-0 opening win over Panama in Adelaide impressed by an Ary Borges hattrick, Pia Sundhage’s workforce have an early likelihood at a measure of redemption in opposition to the French in Brisbane on Saturday.
However captain Rafaelle insists the gamers aren’t feeling weighed down.
“I feel, being Brazilians, we’ve got that strain from our nation, as a result of we love soccer, it is all the time the primary sport in our nation,” she instructed DW.
“However we’re not one of many high groups within the FIFA rankings. So we do not really feel that strain. We will battle till the tip, however it’s not our job to win the event, we’re simply going to run round and possibly get an opportunity to place a star on our chest [symbolizing a World Cup win].”
Brazil arrived early to Australia for a two week training camp at a luxury resort on the Gold Coast of Queensland, Australia. The venue, and placement, was rigorously chosen to permit the gamers to really feel at dwelling in heat circumstances, which the previous Arsenal defender mentioned permits them to specific themselves, notably within the pre-training heat ups.
“I really feel prefer it’s a Brazilian vibe,” mentioned Rafaelle. “We’re Brazilian, we actually love soccer and we’ve got enjoyable taking part in. In order that’s [the best] warm-up for us. It is like we’re children, taking part in like that, and we really feel nice after we’re out on pitch after we can play and have enjoyable within the heat up.”
But beneath the relaxed exterior beats a severe will to win a maiden World Cup. A squad with a mix of expertise in Debinha, Rafaelle, Tamires and Andressa Alves supplemented by rising expertise like Geyse, Borges and highly-rated 17-year-old Aline Gomes definitely has the potential.
However there’s little doubting their talisman. Marta, 37, is taking part in in her sixth World Cup and shall be wanting so as to add to her 115 objectives from 175 caps. Maybe the primary international famous person of the ladies’s sport, Marta has introduced this World Cup shall be her final. It is troublesome to overstate her impression on the sport and the squad, in line with Rafaelle.
Marta an instance to comply with
“She’s actually essential to us, not simply on the pitch however off it too, as a result of she’s a giant marker for the ladies’s sport.”
Brazil’s assistant supervisor Lilie Persson added that even at her superior age, and with accidents starting to mount, Marta stays an ideal instance.
“She’s so aggressive. Throughout each follow, she all the time does her very, very, best in each single element. However on the identical time, she’s such a humble individual. I feel that is what made her the most effective.”
Although Marta, like Megan Rapinoe of the USA, has made her post-tournament intentions clear, Rafaelle revealed that she is going to spend the event urging her to rethink. If she would not succeed, she at the least desires to ship her teammate out on a excessive, with a maiden World Cup win for Brazil.
“We’re speaking about this rather a lot,” she mentioned. “And it might be good to finish with this star for her. However I hope it isn’t her final World Cup. She’s such a great participant, and I hope she will be able to play just a little longer with the nationwide workforce.”
Brazil have ready nicely for this event. Their dominance in South America has lengthy been assured, however these high coaching services, a win over Germany and a narrow penalty loss to England in the Finalissima have elevated their confidence in opposition to European sides, too.
Whether or not this workforce can ship Marta off into the Sydney sundown with a primary World Cup closing for the reason that 2007 loss to Germany or not, her legacy is ensured. For Rafaelle and the others following her on the path she blazed, there’s a dedication to burnish it nonetheless additional.