Moves like this are exactly why Brazil is such a powerhouse in international soccer.
The South American nation has listed Dani Alves as one of their defenders for the upcoming World Cup in Qatar, but here’s the catch: The main reason why he’s being featured on the squad is so he can babysit forward Neymar, according to Diario.
When manager Adenor Leonardo Bacchi (better known as Tite) first announced Alves’ place on the squad, a lot of people were left confused. After all, Alves’ career winding down at 39-years-old and he’s not exactly the sprightly youth he used to be.
What could he possibly have left to contribute to the World Cup team?
Well, Diario has now given us that answer, reporting that Tite and the rest of his coaching staff included Alves on the team because they view that he’s their best chance of keeping Neymar disciplined throughout the tournament.
Dani Alves’ ‘primary role in Brazil’s World Cup squad is to babysit maverick forward Neymar’ https://t.co/w2lLlpEblr
— MailOnline Sport (@MailSport) November 16, 2022
If you’re not aware, and I’m assuming most of you aren’t since Americans are not really the biggest fans of soccer, Neymar is a star player in the sport and has played for prestigious brands such as Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain — he currently plays for the latter.
Well, throughout his career, Neymar has had trouble maintaining his composure while on the field, complaining at referees and allowing his frustration to hurt his play, among other acts that’s put himself into hot water.
.@neymarjr gets right in the face of the referee!!! ??? #CONMEBOL #WCQ #BRAvsCOL pic.twitter.com/0Swx2hDGkD
— fuboTV (@fuboTV) November 12, 2021
You had the situation when Neymar assaulted a fan after he said the star didn’t know how to play, this coming during the 2019 Coupe de France when all he had to do was collect his runners-up medal. Maybe he was mad about PSG losing to Rennes, and on penalties at that, but hell, even Alves criticized him publicly for this. And on top of that, he would end up losing his captain status on the Brazilian international squad.
In 2021, the Brazilian squad once again got pissed off with Neymar when he went out to party the night before a World Cup Qualifier match against Argentina. What made it worse? He missed the game because of an apparent injury. The entire Brazilian national media would toast him for this. (RELATED: US National Soccer Team Changes Crest To LGBT Colors For World Cup In Qatar)
Then another referee situation, Neymar got heated just a couple of months ago after he would get a yellow card for his signature celebration. Instead of just letting it go and moving on, Neymar decided to blow it up even more, attacking the referee on Twitter and blatantly complaining about getting punished — just creating more distractions for himself essentially.
And this is why you see Tite having the genius idea of getting Alves involved. If he stays composed, Neymar will be a consistent threat for Brazil‘s World Cup team. Throughout his 15-season career, the 30-year-old has tallied up 290 goals total, so as you see, Neymar has the potential to be elite in the tournament, he just needs to stay cool, calm and collected.
This is where Dani Alves comes into play, one of the few people who are able to control the emotions of Neymar.
Genius chess move, Tite.