Alexandre Gallo, the Brazilian coach, said the Brazilian Federation thoroughly vetted player ages, countering UAE coach Rashid Amir’s claim last night that 70 per cent of the players in the U17 tournament appear overage.
“Most of the players in Brazil start at a very young age and most of them have contracts with leading clubs,” Gallo said. “Their age has been verified and monitored throughout their careers.”
Gallo said Brazil have more than 30,000 players at the under-17 level.
“These players we have come with have so much talent,” he said. “We have 14 players in this squad with professional contracts and one of them [Danilo] is on the verge of signing a contract with the Spanish club Benfica.”
Brazil are through to the last 16, but Gallo stressed they were not thinking beyond the next game. “ We always think of the first goal and then the next,” he said. “But a 1-0 win would be perfect to us.”
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