Brazil coach Dunga said captain Neymar has lifted his performance for club and country since being handed the armband in September.
Barcelona star Neymar has eight goals to his name since Dunga made the 23-year-old as captain, with the South American powerhouse winning all eight of their outings since their calamitous end to their World Cup campaign.
Neymar has been prominent in Dunga’s second stint in charge of the national team, scoring the winner in his first game as captain against Colombia – and notably hauling all four goals against Japan in October.
“We hope that he keeps doing what he’s done during the friendly matches,” said Dunga, when revealing his Copa America squad on Tuesday.
“When we made him captain, everyone on the technical commission had an expectation on how he should behave and how he’s been behaving.
“It might be a casual thing, but since he’s taken over the captaincy, his performance, the number of goals he was scoring, went up a lot.
“For sure this came along with the maturing that Neymar has managed to do, just as much in the Brazil squad and at Barcelona, and especially to take these challenges and put them away from him and he’s responded well.
“So we hope that he keeps playing the same way, and that he is a reference for other players.”
Santos attacker Robinho has made just six international appearances since the 2011 Copa America – all of them off the bench.
Dunga said the 31-year-old, formerly of Real Madrid, Manchester City and Milan, can use his experience to steer the youth of the squad in the right direction.
Robinho started in three of Brazil’s four fixtures at the 2011 Copa, in which Mano Menezes’ men bowed out in the quarter-finals on penalties to Paraguay.
“Robinho, he’s a player that today is a much more experienced player. He knows the role that he has in the squad at the moment,” Dunga said.
“He’s having a good period right now at Santos. And during other times as well, he’s been a good player at Santos.
“During that time, Robinho was a point of reference. He took on responsibility during the Copa America, he was one of the main strikers during Copa America and he shined.
“Now he’s coming in with a different role, he’s coming with technical capabilities, what he’s shown in Santos, but he’s coming with a bigger responsibility to be able to pass on this experience to the younger generation.”
Brazil play Mexico and Honduras in friendlies in June, prior to their Copa opener against Peru in Temuco on June 14.
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