Boss praises Ronaldinho
Playmaker primed for Brazil return
Last Updated: September 4, 2011 10:26pm
Brazil coach Mano Menezes believes Ronaldinho can make an impact at the 2014 World Cup following his international recall.
The 31-year-old has been included in Menezes' squad for the friendly with Ghana at Craven Cottage on Monday after 10 months in the international wilderness.
The former Barca star has impressed with a string of eye-catching performances for Brazilian outfit Flamengo after leaving AC Milan in January.
Those displays have not gone unnoticed by Menezes, who has brought him back into the international fold, believing he can play a vital role in developing Brazil's younger players ahead of the 2014 tournament in their own country.
"Yes, there's a long time to go yet but a player like Ronaldinho has got the qualities we need," said Menezes.
"It's about playing well at this time and he's been doing that with Flamengo so I do believe he is able to play at the World Cup.
""Ronaldinho brings a lot. He is a leader, has that technical part to his game and he is a player you can rely on to help with all the young players coming into the team now.""
Mano Menezes Quotes of the week
"Ronaldinho brings a lot. He is a leader, has that technical part to his game and he is a player you can rely on to help with all the young players coming into the team now.
"It's important for the Brazilians to have someone like Ronaldinho, with his experience and his history with the Brazil team, with a World Cup coming up.
"Alongside the younger players, he will try to build the Brazil team so we can get to the next stage [in their development] and then to the World Cup."
His international team-mate Lucas Leiva is equally delighted to have the former Gremio player back in the squad.
"As a player, we all know what he is capable of," added the Liverpool midfielder.
"He's been out of the Brazil squad for a few months but whenever he comes back to the national team, we have a lot of respect because he has such a great history.
"We hope he can help the young players develop to a good level. But he wants to keep going and play in the next World Cup as well."