Brazil coach Carlos
Alberto Parreira pondered his attacking options for World Cup qualifiers
against Paraguay and Argentina on Wednesday after opting to rest Ronaldo
for the matches.
Parreira fielded Adriano and Ricardo Oliveira together in a training
session between the first team and the reserves, then said he was still
considering throwing 21-year-old Santos striker Robinho into the fray.
Absent from the session because he is away on club duty, Robinho is
regarded as Brazil's most gifted young forward, although he has
relatively little experience against top-level opposition.
"This is the doubt Robinho and Adriano could start together in attack,
but Ricardo (Oliveira) is also an excellent option," Parreira said.
Ronaldo had asked to be excused the Confederation's Cup in the second
half of this month but Parreira decided to leave the Real Madrid striker
out of next week's World Cup matches as well.
His absence has opened the way for Adriano, who has been mainly used as
a substitute for his country despite an excellent season with Inter
Milan, to get a place in the starting line-up.
Second in the 10-nation South American World Cup qualifying group with
24 points from 13 games, Brazil are at home to Paraguay in Porto Alegre
on Sunday and away to arch-rivals and group leaders Argentina three days
Parreira said he was also undecided about which two central defenders
would be selected from Juan, Lucio and Roque Junior.
The coach said he expected Paraguay, who are attempting to qualify for
their third successive World Cup, to defend in depth and play a
"It's a team who are not ashamed to defend with nine or ten players and
are not ashamed to take the direct route all the time," he said.