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Dani Alves: Brazil must improve to qualify for 2018 World Cup

Dani Alves says Brazil have to improve to qualify for the 2018 World Cup after Dunga’s side needed two late goals to secure a point in Tuesday’s 2-2 draw with Paraguay.

Dario Lezcano and Edgar Benitez had put Paraguay in control of the CONMEBOL qualifier, but Ricardo Oliveira and Dani Alves hit back in the closing stages.

Brazil are sixth in the qualifying section and in their next fixture face a trip to Ecuador, who are joint top of the group alongside Uruguay after six matches.

“I believe we have to improve,” said Barcelona defender Dani Alves. “We gave a lot of space for them.

“But I think [the media] is not the place to talk about it. It is behind the scenes, talking and doing our part, because I believe that this is the Brazilian national team.

“For rivals to respect us, we have to do the basic work.”

The 32-year-old felt there were positives to take from Brazil’s comeback, but criticised the pitch at the Estadio Defensores del Chaco.

“The team needs to have spirit, determination and attitude, as we had on this day,” he said. “We are not satisfied with it, but we know that we are working and struggling to be able to return the team to the place it deserves to be.

“The game became very difficult. I’m glad nobody got hurt, because the pitch is a disaster. It’s hard to play on such a pitch.

“But nothing will serve as an excuse. This is the degree of difficulty you face in qualifiers.”

Wed 30 Mar, 2016
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