“How are you feeling physically?
I felt embarrassed (a thigh) In my last few games at PSG, it was interfering with my performances and midweek training. With the World Cup approaching, it was decided together with PSG’s medical staff that I needed a few days off to deal with this issue. I came back and gradually resumed my normal exercise routine. And today (Thursday), I was able to do the whole session with the group, I’m very satisfied. A week before we start (vs Serbia), that’s a good sign. I think I’ve kept a good physical condition because I’ve played a lot with Paris.
“Today we have a lot of opportunities offensively, with a great variety of profiles, that’s one of our strengths.”
Can this World Cup be Neymar’s?
The pressure and that label of technical leader are inevitable for him, it’s always been like that since he’s been in the Seleçao. It’s normal when you see what he’s capable of and what qualities he has. But he can handle it. He comes to the World Cup in excellent physical condition. I’m with him every day, I know how prepared he is, how focused he is on the project, how much he has given up on his everyday life. He’s my close friend, I can 100% guarantee what I’m saying. But I always tell him that he doesn’t have to carry more weight than the others. Around him there are experienced players who support him and young people who take responsibility.
So he can really shine?
I hope so, I hope so! We have a lot of attacking options today, with a wide variety of profiles, and that’s one of our strengths. The division of leadership is also the division of responsibilities. We all help each other. There’s Thiago, Casemiro, I…
What does your trainer bring you, Tite?
The experience he gained at the last World Cup gives us a lot of advantages. He speaks to us without any filter. Since we’ve been together we’ve been working a lot because we needed to get to a good intensity quickly. He also tries to give us a lot of information. When we got here we already had meetings to prepare for the game. It says everything that needs to be said, shows everything that needs to be shown. It’s the World Cup and it’s all about the small details. He wants to prepare everything, that’s his way of not leaving anything to chance. He tells us exactly what he wants, how we should behave in certain situations.
Your offices are open to the press, so everyone knows what you’re up to. Is that a disadvantage?
No, because we have nothing to hide. This way of working can only be good, because if you lock yourself in too much, in the end the press will speculate about what’s going on, it won’t really be the reality … something happens, everyone is there and sees it, it’s nice cleared. We cannot be influenced by bad things from outside. The team is well prepared, the mood is very good, we are prepared for anything. »