x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Dunga hold up his hands

Dunga, Brazil's much-criticised coach, took full blame for yesterday's surprise defeat to Holland which is likely to lead to calls from his homeland to quit the national team.

Dunga, Brazil's much-criticised coach, took full blame for yesterday's surprise defeat to Holland which is likely to lead to calls from his homeland to quit the national team. Brazil also lost in the quarterfinals four years ago, falling to France 1-0. Dunga, the former Brazil captain, was hired to coach the team after that defeat despite no previous managerial experience and his future is certain to come into question now.

"I have the greatest responsibility," he said. Dunga, 46, hinted that his time in charge of Brazil may be over, He said that "everybody knew from the start that my contract was for four years", without elaborating. Brazil have been criticised for being too defensive and lacking the abundance of flair players that have epitomised the side down the years. "We didn't expect this," Dunga said. "We know that any World Cup match is about 90 minutes. In the first half we were able to play better and we weren't able to maintain that rhythm in the second half."

Bert van Marwijk, the Dutch coach, is convinced his team can go on to win the championship after ousting the favourites. "I said to the Dutch Football Association two years ago that I was not going to this tournament just to take part in it," he said. "If I go somewhere, I want to win. People might think that's arrogant, but we have proven we can beat Brazil, one of the best teams in the world. "But I will make it very clear: we have still got two matches to play and the next match is the most important. We will have to really concentrate on that.

"We could have lost it in the first 15 minutes. At half time, I made it very clear to the players. I told them time and time again, 'You have to play your own game. You have to have patience against Brazil.' When the [own] goal was scored, we just got better and better." Holland will go on without Gregory van der Wiel and Nigel de Jong for the semi-final; both are suspended. * Agencies