We are favourites: Brazil ‘feeling the pressure’
Technical director Parreira and coach Luiz Felipe Scolari remain confident Brazil – who meet Croatia, Mexico and Cameroon in Group A – can win their sixth World Cup this year.
However, protesters greeted the players in Rio de Janeiro on Monday, and Parreira, who managed the country to their fourth World Cup crown in 1994, feels such issues represent unnecessary distractions for the squad.
“Negative feedback and images coming from fans, from the media in general, puts pressure on the players,” Parreira said.
“We as the leaders of the team, are confident in these players.
“Just look at the team that we have. We have the best defence in the world. We have a big team. The team is really good. Experienced, high-quality players, that are well-respected in international football, playing at home.
“We treat everything here with what we feel. Yes, we are favourites. We aren’t obligated to win, but we are the favourites.”
Parreira said Brazil were desperate to win the World Cup on home soil, with their previous hosting in 1950 resulting in a shock loss to Uruguay in the final.
“This is something that has haunted us for the past 64 years. Of all the big teams, we’re the only one that hasn’t won at home,” he added.
“Italy played two, won one. Brazil has played once at home and lost and of course we hope that we can win and change this history.
“For us, (1950) is over. We have beaten them a lot of times, even in the World Cup, but this story always comes back. We want to re-write this football story, with a victory here at home.”
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