The years pass and his already vast coaching experience continues to expand, but there is one footballing trend that Luiz Felipe Scolari admits to being unable to leave behind: his preference for a out-and-out centre-forward leading the line. Quick to take full advantage was Fluminense target man Fred, who struck in each of Felipão’s first three friendlies back in charge – against England, Italy and Russia.
What is more, at the time the Russians were the only team in European Zone qualifying for the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ yet to concede a goal. Far from getting carried away, however, like any good goalgetter Fred knows he must remain constantly alert, ready to sniff out the next chance to find the net.
“Now, after these first few games with the new Brazil coaching staff, I’ve been able to spend more time with Felipão too and find out what he expects from the team. But all that will count for nothing if my performances dip. I’m just concentrating on keeping playing well for my club, to ensure I get selected and can do an effective job for A Seleção,” said the experienced forward, who played and scored for Brazil at Germany 2006, when speaking to FIFA.com.
Thoroughly benefitting from Fred’s hunger for goals and international recognition are his club Flu, where he is a huge fans’ favourite. And it is hardly surprising: in the Carioca side’s 2012 Brasileirao championship win, the No9 not only topped the divisional scorer’s charts but was chosen as the competition’s best player.
His classic, gutsy style of penalty-box play further adds to his iconic status with the supporters, while telling FIFA.com that “if I was asked to see out the rest of my career here, I’d sign up straight away”, does the appeal of the former Lyon striker – who spent four seasons in France – no harm either.