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Neymar named permanent Brazil captain
Brazil coach Tite scrapped his plans to rotate captains as Neymar was announced as the permanent captain of the Brazil side on the eve of Brazil’s friendly against the United States at New Jersey.
Tite had been rotating the captain’s armband throughout his tenure so far. Brazil had the strongest team in the recently concluded World Cup but they were stopped by Belgium in the quarterfinals stage. Neymar came under criticism for not being able to inspire his side while his theatrics on the pitch made headlines.
Neymar, who previously suggested that there is ‘still a boy inside of me’, said that the responsibility of captaining the Brazilian team will do him good. "I accepted again because I've learned a lot and I will learn much more. And this responsibility will be a good thing to me,” Neymar was quoted as saying by Goal.com.
Neymar also came under intense criticism from Brazil media because he did not confront the media following the shock World Cup exit.
Reflecting on his difficult World Cup campaign, Neymar said: "I think that probably no one here in this room will ever live something close that I've lived not even during the Olympics, but after the World Cup as well.
Neymar wanted to be a World Champion and given the amount of quality that was present in the Brazil squad, he found the defeat especially hard. He understood why fans got mad and believes that there is no better way to silence the critics than to perform on the pitch.
"My responsibility is even bigger due to the captaincy but if you don't play [good] football there's no need of it," Neymar continued when asked how he could silence his critics.
"I want to apologise to the supporters which got mad with us because losing is a very bad thing. We believed we could [be world champions] but it wasn't possible."
Neymar will be 30 when the next World Cup comes around in 2022 at Qatar.