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‘Chile can surprise’

Calcutta: Jose Ramirez Barreto thinks Chile can create the biggest upset of the World Cup when they take on Brazil in the first pre-quarter final on Saturday.

Barreto’s belief stems from the fact that Brazil’s wingbacks Dani Alves and Marcelo have hardly been inspiring. He is also a bit apprehensive about Brazil’s ploy of playing with only one defensive midfielder Luiz Gustavo.

“Chile are an extremely fast-paced team. Players like Arturo Vidal, Alexis Sanchez and Marcelo Diaz can hurt you if you are not alert. So far, captain Thiago Silva and David Luiz have been outstanding in the central defence. But what has been really worrisome is the performance of the two wingbacks Dani and Marcelo. It seems they are not in the best of form and that is putting immense pressure on the back two.

“I also believe that Brazil should play another holding midfielder alongside Gustavo. We need people in the heart of midfield who can nip Chile’s attacks in the bud,” the Brazilian said at a media conference on Friday. Barreto added: “We have seen a lot of upsets in this World Cup. So if we witness another one on Saturday, it won’t be surprising.”

He, however, felt the Brazil forwardline was slowly attaining peak form.

“If you see, Germany had started the tournament in a convincing manner. However, they are not looking the same any more. Brazil, on the other hand, are playing as a unit and attaining peak formů Oscar, Neymar and Fred are gelling well. If they can play together, goals will not be hard to come by. That is really a positive sign,” said the former Mohun Bagan striker.