Brazil’s media were underwhelmed Wednesday following a 1-0 win over Ecuador in New Jersey which saw Neymar turn creator, setting up a Willian goal to give new coach Dunga a second friendly success since replacing Luiz Felipe Scolari.
It has fallen to Dunga to rebuild in time for the 2018 finals in Russia.
He took over the reins for a second time in four years after Scolari stepped down following the Selecao’s World Cup implosion.
Two wins and two clean sheets mean the five-time champions’ 1994 World Cup winning skipper has yet to drop any clangers — but his first Brazil side won few marks for style and his latest incarnation has yet to convince, at least aesthetically.
“Not a scintillating match,” commented Rio daily O Dia after an encounter won thanks to Wilian’s cool close range finish from a lofted through pass by Neymar.
“Brazil showed once again they very much depend on Neymar,” the paper added, the Barcelona star having scored last week’s solitary goal to see off Colombia in Miami as he returned from the injury which saw him miss Germany’s 7-1 World Cup semi-final humbling.
“Rehearsed victory,” observed Globo in allusion to the goal, a slick routine perfected in training.
Folha de Sao Paulo noted that the team “did not play well technically” especially in the first half, with “a lot of passes going astray”.
Dunga fielded five survivors from the Germany humiliation as he seeks to overhaul the squad — but they almost had to settle for a draw as Ecuador came close when Enner Valencia saw a shot strike the post after beating goalkeeper Jefferson.
Neymar meanwhile showed his mortality by missing from point blank range. He blamed the “horrible” pitch afterwards.
Having introduced fresh blood in the shape of defenders Marquinhos and Gil as well as Cruzeiro striker Ricardo Goulart, Dunga insisted afterwards that he saw “no negative points” and that his new faces had “made the most of their opportunities.” – Agence France-Presse