Brazil coach Dunga has told his team to focus on beating Chile tomorrow rather than bask in the glory of having qualified for the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ with three rounds of matches to spare.
The five-time world champions, who lead the South American qualifying zone on 30 points, secured a berth in South Africa 2010 by overcoming arch enemies Argentina 3-1 in Rosario on Saturday. The Chileans will join the Brazilians at next year's finals if they triumph against the Selecao tomorrow at the Estadio de Pituacu in Salvador.
But Dunga insists there is still pressure on his side to perform despite the fact their qualification is assured. "To say a national team is ready one year before the World Cup would be too soon," he said. "We have a combative spirit and a team who do their best each match. They can say we don't play well, but they cannot say we do not do our best."
Brazil midfielder Felipe Melo believes Chile are one of the best teams in South America. "I see Chile as one of the qualified teams," he said. "They are second in the table and it is not by chance. They are dangerous. Both teams play similar football, playing with the ball."
We have a combative spirit and a team who do their best each match. They can say we don't play well, but they cannot say we do not do our best.
Dunga called up four home-based players on Monday night - Sao Paulo defender Andre Dias, Palmeiras duo Cleiton Xavier and Diego Souza and Atletico Mineiro striker Diego Tardelli. The quartet replace Kaka, captain Lucio, Luis Fabiano and Ramires, who are all banned for the Chile game. Manchester City's Robinho will miss the duel due to injury. Chile head into this match on the back of a 2-2 home draw with Venezuela.
Coach Marcelo Bielsa claims his team will head into tomorrow's game with a bold approach. "We'll try to attack Brazil," he said. "We'll attack more than defend. We want to have the ball more than recovering it. We will not speculate about what will happen. If we dominate or are dominated, we will see."
Rodrigo Millar, who scored the equaliser last weekend, commented: "The goal against Venezuela was the best thing ever in my life - no question. But me and my team-mates want the same - we want to make it into the World Cup by beating Brazil."