Juninho Pernambucano believes Arturo Vidal could hold the key to Chile beating hosts Brazil in the last 16 of the FIFA World Cup.
The former Brazil international has warned his country’s current squad that Vidal possesses all the abilities to be considered a complete midfielder and is a serious threat.
Chile meet Brazil at Estadio Mineirao on Saturday as the two sides target a place in the quarter-finals and Juninho is under no illusion as to how tough it will be for Luiz Felipe Scolari’s side.
The ex-Lyon playmaker praised Vidal’s effectiveness with and without the ball, as well as the influence he Juventus man has on his team-mates ahead of the clash between the South American rivals.
“A team that has Vidal always has a chance of winning,” Juninho told La Tercera . “He is a player who is very involved and he is complete.
“When your team has the ball he works to retrieve it. He also has a lot of inspiration to empower their peers.
“He’s also very involved offensively. I think he’s a very complete player.”
Although Brazil go into the encounter as favourites, Juninho knows Chile are more than capable of beating the hosts but he believes Brazil can exploit their defensive frailties.
“I really like Chile,” he added. “The have been playing very well for quite some time.
“What I like is that they try to pressure opponents throughout the match, for the full 90 minutes. That is admirable.
“I think it’s a team that can make history. Although, of course, they still have the same defensive problems they’ve always had.