MONTEVIDEO, Uruguay, November 10 – Brazil host Colombia in Sao Paulo on Thursday, knowing the victory will reserve their ticket to Qatar with six World Cup qualifiers remaining after an almost perfect record so far.
Even a draw for Seleçao would be enough if Uruguay lost at home to Argentina on Friday, and Brazilian media reported that coach Tite is already planning to travel to the Arab Cup in Qatar next month to check on the results. World Cup venues and facilities.
Publicly, however, Tite is not coming forward with a trip to take on his Argentinian rivals in San Juan on the horizon next week.
“We have two important matches against two teams which, for me, are of the highest level,” Tite said.
“A good performance and a good result against Colombia will provide us with good preparation for Argentina.”
Tite surprised when he recalled Barcelona’s Philippe Coutinho to his squad after more than a year of absence, largely due to a nine-month absence with a knee injury that required three surgeries.
“It’s like it’s the first time, that’s how I see it every time I’m in the squad. It’s an honor to wear this jersey,” said Coutinho, who has struggled to play this season at his club.
Brazil topped the CONMEBOL World Cup qualifying group, winning 10 of their 11 matches and scoring 26 goals.
Their only flaw was a 0-0 draw with Colombia last month, which ended a nine-game winning streak.
Another close game is likely against a team in a streak of back-to-back draws.
Colombia are once again welcoming playmaker James Rodriguez for the first time in a year despite his ignominious debut at Al-Rayyan, their new Qatari club.
Last month, in just his third league game since leaving Everton, the former Real Madrid and Bayern Munich player was bizarrely sent off after receiving two quick yellow cards for protesting after receiving a blow franc.
The inclusion of James is a welcome boost for Colombia, who will be deprived of injured veteran striker Radamel Falcao.
Colombia are currently engaged in a close battle to automatically qualify for the World Cup alongside Ecuador and Uruguay.
The three teams are separated by a single point in the battle to finish in the top four places, with the fifth heading for an interconfederal barrage.
– Messi a doubt –
Like Brazil, second-placed Argentina could also advance this month, although they would need more results to continue their path.
And they may have to do without star player Lionel Messi, who suffers from knee and hamstring issues and has missed the last two games for his club, Paris Saint-Germain.
After their trip to Uruguay, the undefeated Argentina in 25 appearances will host Brazil next week and wins in both could be enough to secure their ticket to Qatar.
Uruguay, however, will seek revenge after their 3-0 surrender in Buenos Aires last month.
They will be without injured Manchester United striker Edinson Cavani, although Atletico Madrid’s Luis Suarez is back in South America.
After also collapsing 4-1 against Brazil last month, iconic Uruguay coach Oscar Tabarez finds himself under pressure, with many fans believing the 74-year-old’s record-breaking 15-year tenure should end. .
He will also have to do without Real Madrid’s Federico Valverde among the eight absent.
Third-scorer Ecuador will look to boost their qualifying hopes as they host the world’s lowest Venezuela on Thursday before a trip to Chile next week.
Only Venezuela is missing from the qualifying table, nine points out of the top five, although Chile, Paraguay, Peru and Bolivia have some catching up to do with just six qualifiers left.
Above all, Paraguay hosts Chile and Peru entertains Bolivia on Thursday in must-see matches.