Richarlison ready for Brazil return, eyes World Cup

Richarlison ready for Brazil return, eyes World Cup

Rio de Janeiro, March 22 (IANS) Everton forward Richarlison has said that he is ready to reclaim a starting berth in Brazil’s national team for the World Cup qualifiers against Chile and Bolivia. The 24-year-old has not represented his country since the Copa America final last July, when Brazil lost 1-0 to Argentina at Rio de Janeiro’s Maracana stadium.

The iconic venue is set to be the stage for his return against Chile on Thursday (March 24).

“I was left with a feeling of sadness (at not being a part of the squad),” Richarlison, who has suffered knee and calf problems in the past six months, told a virtual news conference on Tuesday (IST), reports Xinhua.

“My (injuries) were serious and there were people saying that I wasn’t going to go to the World Cup. But I’m at ease. The players that came in did well but I know my potential and my talent. I already have a history here with the national team that I think deserves respect.”

Brazil’s clash with Chile will be followed by a duel with Bolivia in La Paz on March 29. The five-time world champions lead the South American zone standings and have already qualified for football’s showpiece tournament, to be played in Qatar from November 21 to December 18.

Advertisement

Meanwhile, Ajax defender Lisandro Martinez and Inter Milan striker Lautaro Martinez have been ruled out of Argentina’s FIFA World Cup qualifiers against Venezuela and Ecuador, the Argentine Football Association (AFA) has said.

Lisandro suffered a quadriceps strain in his left leg, while Lautaro tested positive for COVID-19, the AFA said in a statement. The entity did not immediately name replacements for the pair.

Advertisement

Argentina will meet Venezuela in Buenos Aires on March 25 and Ecuador in Guayaquil four days later in the last double-header of South American qualifiers.

The two-time World Cup winners have already qualified for the football showpiece tournament, to be played in Qatar from November 21 to December 18.

Advertisement

–IANS

akm/

Advertisement

Topics: