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Paris Saint-Germain players Thiago Silva and Lucas back in Brazil squad for friendlies


SAO PAULO — Paris Saint-Germain players Thiago Silva and Lucas are back in Brazil's squad for friendlies against Turkey and Austria next month.

It's their first callups by Dunga since he became coach after the World Cup. Thiago Silva was captain of the World Cup squad but has been injured, while Lucas hasn't played for Brazil for a year.

Brazil will play Turkey on Nov. 12 in Istanbul, and Austria in Vienna on Nov. 18.

The 23-player list announced on Thursday in Rio de Janeiro included Barcelona's Neymar and Liverpool's Philippe Coutinho, as expected, as well as surprises such as Porto midfielder Casemiro and Hoffenheim striker Firmino.

Shakhtar Donetsk striker Luiz Adriano, who scored five goals in a Champions League match on Tuesday, also was in.

The coach didn't pick players from Brazilian clubs as the local season is reaching its decisive rounds, leaving out players such as Kaka and Robinho, who were summoned for friendlies this month. Striker Diego Tardelli, who scored both goals in the win against Argentina in Beijing, also had to be left out.

Next month's friendlies will coincide with the final rounds of the Brazilian league and the Brazilian Cup finals. The Brazilian football calendar is one of the few which doesn't stop on FIFA dates.

"We have to look at the interests of the national team but also of Brazilian football," Dunga said. "It's hard for the coach of the national team, we don't have a lot of time to make observations, but we have to understand that we have to make some sacrifices, as the clubs did during the other friendlies. At the same time, it's good because it gives us a chance to look at new players."

Lucas helped Brazil win the 2013 Confederations Cup, but lost space in Luiz Felipe Scolari's team in the run-up to the World Cup. He was among the seven alternate players for the World Cup squad but never got a chance to play.

"He will have his chance now," Dunga said. "The players we are calling up are having the chance to show what they can do on the field. It will depend on their performances. We will keep making observations."

Firmino, playing in German football since 2010, is a newcomer to the national team.

"He has great quality, is fast, and knows how to score easily," Dunga said. "This is what we are looking for."

Also in, as expected, are Chelsea's Filipe Luis, Oscar and Willian, Paris Saint-Germain's David Luiz, and Atletico Madrid's Miranda.

Brazil has played four matches under Dunga, beating Ecuador, Colombia, Argentina and Japan. The team's first official tournament is next year's Copa America in Chile.

"We are not ready yet, but we are on the right track," said Dunga, a defensive midfielder who captained Brazil in the 1994 World Cup. He coached Brazil in the 2010 tournament in South Africa.


Goalkeepers: Rafael (Napoli), Neto (Fiorentina), Diego Alves (Valencia).

Defenders: Mario Fernandes (CSKA Moscow), Alex Sandro (Porto), Danilo (Porto), Filipe Luis (Chelsea), David Luiz (Paris Saint-Germain), Marquinhos (Paris Saint-Germain), Thiago Silva (Paris Saint-Germain), Miranda (Atletico Madrid).

Midfielders: Luiz Gustavo (Wolfsburg), Romulo (Spartak Moscow), Fernandinho (Manchester City), Casemiro (Porto), Willian (Chelsea), Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool), Oscar (Chelsea), Lucas (Paris Saint-Germain).

Forwards: Neymar (Barcelona), Luiz Adriano (Shaktar Donetsk), Douglas Costa (Shaktar Donetsk), Firmino (Hoffenheim).

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