Brazil would be nuts to leave Ferna behind
- 16 December 2013 09:05
- Posted by @dclayton_mcfc
There are growing calls for Fernandinho to earn the international recognition his performances at City deserve this morning.
So far, the Blues’ holding midfielder has been overlooked by Brazil boss Luiz Felipe Scolari but, as he showed yet again against Arsenal where he picked up man-of-the-match honours for a superb display, but if the groundswell of opinion is anything to go by, his exile may soon end.
Stuart Brennan, writing in the MEN, was just one of the impressed journalists at the Etihad on Saturday, reporting: “The quiet, understated midfielder put on a masterclass of holding midfield play, and netted two top-quality goals to underline his growing importance to a team which can sweep all before it if can find consistency in its attacking brilliance.
“Every great team needs a top holding midfielder, a player who gives the stability and possession which allows genius to express itself.
“But to label Fernandinho as a ‘water-carrier’ – as Eric Cantona once called Didier Deschamps - is a gross underestimation of a player who not only breaks up the opposition, but also sends the Blues springing onto the attack.
“His passing, long and short, has been exemplary and, as we twice saw against Arsenal, he can finish when he does get the chance to go forward himself.
“’Ferna’, at the age of 28, has just five caps, his last coming in the defeat by Edin Dzeko’s Bosnia nearly two years ago, and has been studiously ignored by Scolari.
“His City team-mate Samir Nasri, and manager Manuel Pellegrini, feel that is bound to change before Brazil convene again for a friendly against South Africa in March.
“Nasri was blunt about Scolari’s continuing oversight: ‘I think it is a mistake,” he said. ‘I have a great respect for the other Brazilian players but when I look at their squad I think he deserves a place in there.
“’Sometimes a manager makes choices but it is not finished yet and if he continues to play like this he can be in the squad for the World Cup.’”
Well said, Samir. And Samir is quoted again, this time on ESPN, but this time sharing his thoughts on the Blues’ Champions League prospects.
“And Nasri believes that result, alongside the 3-2 comeback against Bayern Munich last week, would stick in the minds of their European rivals.
“’Everyone around Europe will look at that game against Arsenal," Nasri said. ‘And when you see a team perform like we did - on top of what we did against Bayern in midweek - you are a little bit worried about playing us.’
“Nasri said City did not fear any team in the draw, but admitted there were a number of potential match-ups he would like to avoid.
“’No, I'm not worried by who we could face,’ Nasri said. "I don't think Real or Barca will be happy to play Manchester City. But if I had to pick the draw, of course I would go for Paris Saint Germain, Atletico Madrid or Borussia Dortmund.’”
We’ll know soon enough…