Thursday, June 4, 2015

New Addition: Teams on Tour-Part One

Brazil’s Tour of Europe (Spring 1978)

(Note: I would like to once again thank for uploading this article  )

In the spring of 1978 the Brazilian national team embarked on a tour of Europe to prepare for the 1978 World Cup to be held in neighboring Argentina.
The national team had been under the management of former Army Paratrooper Claudio Coutinho since the previous year. He taken over in the middle of the World Cup qualifying process from Osvaldo Brandão and had achieved the qualification a few months after taking over.
Coutinho was keen for this tour to prepare Brazil for much needed quality European opposition ahead of the World Cup. He wanted his squad to acclimatize to the close man-to-man marking that they would surely face in the World Cup.
He also wanted his team to be able to compete physically with the Europeans, reminiscent of Mario Zagallo’s attempt to do the same in 1974.  He wanted to blend ‘Total Football’ of the Dutch with Brazilian skills.
According to critics, Coutinho’s desire to physically strengthen his players came at the expense of their natural abilities and talent. Given that, it was strange, that the press continuously reported on stories that Zagallo was in the wings just waiting to be appointed.
Coutinho had to continuously deal with the difficult Brazilian press with other rumors as well such that he was only in the job because the Army had decided so and that there even Army personnel on his staff (remember Brazil was under a Military Government).
Coutinho brushed aside press rumors as he had bigger headaches on the horizon.
As early as February 27th, Coutinho was to have all his desired players at his disposal.
The team would be concentrated at Hotel Peinheiros at Teresopolis in the State of Rio de Janeiro, before flying to Europe on March 28th.
In the World Cup, Brazil were to play their matches at Mar del Plata. Coutinho had been strongly opposed to the venue.  Not only was the weather cold and windy in June, but also the narrow pitch made the spaces between the defenders smaller and this did not suit Brazil.
Coutinho had proposed to change Brazil’s venue to Mendoza, but Mar del Plata possessed the necessary and required hotel accommodations.
Brazil were initially due to play Argentina (home and away) as part of Copa Roca, but Coutinho refused to take part as the match in Argentina was to take place at Boca Juniors’ La Bombonera Stadium. He only wanted to play in stadiums Brazil would be involved with in the Finals. Argentineans could not accommodate as neither the Mar Del Plata venue, nor River Plate’s El Monumental (provided Brazil reached the Final) were ready.
To prepare his squad for the World Cup conditions, he made his team train on muddy fields. The Terespolis training was held during the rainy season, but if it did not rain, he would order the field to be watered. The players were to train in specially designed boots to adjust to slippery fields.
For this ambitious European tour, Coutinho selected a squad of 21.
The starting goalkeeper was the veteran Emerson Leao with Carlos of Ponte Preta in reserve.
The chosen defenders were: Ze Maria, Toninho, Oscar, Abel, Amaral, Edinho, Rodrigues Neto and Polozi.
Only three midfielders were chosen: Captain Roberto Rivellino, Toninho Cerezo and Batista.
The strikers and wingers selected were: Tarciso, Gil, Reinaldo, Zico, Mendonça, Nunes, Romeu and Dirceu.
Only four of the selected players had previous World cup experience: Leao, Rivellino, Dirceu and Ze Maria.
Naturally there was controversy and second-guessing from the press for the omissions, such as Paulo Cesar, Marinho Chagas and Nelinho. The press suggested that Paulo Cesar and Marinho were ommitted because their strong personalities were at odds with the disciplinarian Coutinho.
Coutinho did however; include the two players, along with six others on a reserve list that he could call upon. The others were Roberto Dinamite, Paulo Cesar Carpeggiani, Marinho Peres, Paulo Roberto Falcao, Chicão and Luis Pereira.
Luis Pereira was a special case. The Atletico Madrid sweeper was perceived by many as a must for Brazil. He was looked upon as a sort of Brazil’s Mario Kempes, the foreign-based player that efforts must not be spared to include.
Brazilian Federation emissaries negotiated with Atletico Madrid officials to obtain his release, however, they informed the Brazilians that he would only be released after the first week of May, when the Spanish League had concluded.
The efforts for Luis Pereira did not please everyone and some Brazilian club managers even stated in newspapers that his incorporation under these conditions was not necessary. A section of the fans also turned against him, especially after he declared that he had to prioritize his club because they paid his wages.
In any case he was not selected for this tour or the World Cup itself.
Prior to departing for Europe, Brazil played three unofficial friendlies vs. State selections.
On March 12th, they defeated the Rio de Janeiro State Countryside XI (7-0) with Zico scoring five goals. The following week on March 19th, they defeated the Goiás State Team (3-1) and three days later, defeated Paraná State XI (1-0).
Prior to departing to Europe, Coutinho gave a directive of ’19 rules’ to his players. These included: no alcohol, no beards, no long hair, no gambling, hefty punishment for any player who argued with referees, etc.
The team embarked on schedule to Europe to face its first opponents, the rising France squad that had given them a scare at Maracana the previous summer by tying (2-2) after being behind (0-2) and had left the field under the applause of the Brazilian audience.
The match took place at Paris’ Parc des Princes stadium on April 1st . In the audience were a number of France’s 1958 World Cup heroes, who had succumbed to Pele’s Brazil, such as Raymond Kopa and Jean Vincent. Also in the stands were the managers of France’s first round opponents (and potentially Brazil’s future opponents): Argentina’s Cesar Luis Menotti, Italy’s Enzo Bearzot and Hungary’s Lajos Baroti.
Brazil’s right wing had been a problem; Tarciso of Grêmio started the match on that position. He had been selected for this tour to be tested, since Gil had been disappointing. Similarly, prolific club scorer Reinaldo was selected to resolve Brazil’s problem in finding a genuine center forward. He started this match alongside Dirceu and Zico. Toninho Cerezo took his place as defensive midfielder (to mark Platini) and Rivellino was the organizer and leader.
France was missing many players through injury. These included starting goalkeeper Andre Rey, and others such as Marius Tresor, Gerard Janvion, Dominique Bathenay, Dominique Rocheteau and Bernard Lacombe. They were replaced with Jean Paul Bertrand-Demanes, Christian Lopez, Patrick Battiston, Loic Amisse and Marc Berdoll.
Brazil viewed France’s zonal marking to their advantage, as they preferred it to individual marking.
Just like the match, the previous summer, Brazil started the match in relentless fashion with attack after attack.
However, they were unlucky and Zico was guilty of missing chances that he otherwise would have scored.
French goalkeeper Bertrand-Demanes was excellent and kept the French in the match with many saves. 

Photo From: Onze, Issue 28, April 1978
(Reinaldo and Platini, April 1, 1978, France 1-Brazil 0)

For the second half, Brazil were clearly tired and could not maintain the same pace and intensity and slowly gave the initiative to the French with an excellent Jean-Marc Guillou taking charge in the midfield.
In the 86th minute, Jean Petit (who had replaced an injured Henri Michel), started a move on the right side with another substitute François Bracci who gave the ball back to Petit, who immediately crossed the ball into the box. Oscar managed to intercept the pass, however, the ball deflected in the direction of Platini who striked it home from near the edge of the box.
This was France’s first ever victory vs. Brazil.
Many were crtitical of Coutinho’s decision to take Tarcisio off at halftime and replaceing him with Gil. Tarcisio had given Maxime Bossis a difficult time and was a thorn in their side.

Photo From: Mondial, old series, Issue 18, May 1978
(Henri Michel between Edinho, Rivellino and Cerezo, April 1, 1978, France 1-Brazil 0)

Reinaldo had also been unimpressive as a striker. The weak point for Brazil, had been the left flank, where defender Edinho’s constant sorties upfield eventually tired him out and left that side unbalanced. (It must be noted that Edinho was really a central defender).
Afterwards, Coutinho was impressed with France’s display despite missing many key players through injury.
He felt the French were closer to them as Latins and singled out Platini and Didier Six as players who could fit in any Brazilian squad with Rivellino and others.
Four days later on April 5th, Brazil met West Germant at Hamburg’s Volksparkstadion.
Brazil wearing blue uniforms started with virtually the same squad, except with Ze Maria (right back) and Gil starting in place of Toninho and Tarciso respectively.
Coutinho had a lot of praise for German midfielders Heinz Flohe, Bernd Holzenbein and Rainer Bonhof and was certain Helmut schoen would select his strongest squad and formation to face Brazil.
For the Germans this match marked the international debuts of VfB Stuttgart pair of Karl-Heinz Foerster and Hansi Muller.
Brazil improved during the match after Rivellino was substituted and Zico took upon organizational duties.

Photo From: Mondial, old series, Issue 18, May 1978
(Manfred Kaltz and Roberto Rivellino, April 5, 1978, West Germany 0-Brazil 1)

Brazil scored the match winning goal in the 76th minute, when Ze Maria started a move on the right side of midfield, after a one -two with Zico he took a shot that Sepp Maier parried, the ball deflected back into Ze Maria into the path of Nunes, waiting in front of the goal to score.
Unlike the France match, the Brazilians actually looked physically fitter especially towards the end of the match. This was surprising since the Germans were considered to be much more physically fit players.

Photo From: Mondial, old series, Issue 18, May 1978
(Edinho, April 5, 1978, West Germany 0-Brazil 1)

A few days later, Brazil traveled to Saudi Arabia, to the city of Jeddah for a match vs. Al Ahly on April 10th.  They won the match comfortably (6-1) and Carlos, Abel, Mendonça and Romeu saw some playing time.
Three days later, they traveled to Milan, for a friendly vs. Internazionale Milano commemorating their 70th Anniversary on April 13th .
Brazil dominated their Italian hosts and scored first in the 24th minute, when Nunes picked up a rebound after Ivano Bordon had blocked a shot by Zico.
Early in the second half, Dirceu scored Brazil’s second from a volley thirty yards out with Bordon out of position.  Polozi and Rodrigues Neto played their first matches of the tour.
Inter’s Gabriel Oriali was very impressed with Brazil, especially with Zico and Rivellino.
Brazil’s goalkeeper Emerson Leao learned after the match that his club Palmeiras wanted to transfer him out, because he had given them many problems.
Six days later on April 19th, Brazil met England at Wembley in a high profile match. Brazil scored first through Gil in the tenth minute, who took a low shot from the right edge of the box between two defenders into the lower left corner.
England equalized with twenty minutes remaining from a free kick from Kevin Keegan that Leao touched but could not hold onto.
However, the match is remembered for Brazil’s cynical and rough play in a match that England dominated.
Edinho, Ze Maria, Cerezo, Batista and Abel were all booked in a foul ridden match that was very unlike them.
Edinho was booked as early as the fifth minute for a bad tackle on Brian Greenhoff. Batista was booked for standing in front of Keegan prior to him taking his goalscoring free kick.
Dutch referee Charles Corver was criticized for not calling at least one penalty kick for England and not sending off any Brazilian players.
He later said he should have sent off at least one, but was afraid of spoiling the occasion and perhaps a worse violent outcome.

Photo From: Mondial, old series, Issue 18, May 1978
(April 19, 1978, England 1-Brazil 1)

Coutinho blamed the England match on his players being tired of traveling and moving from hotel to hotel and different food and temperature changes. He stated he later had told his players that this type of display would not be tolerated in the finals.
Brazil concluded its tour two days later vs. Spanish club Atletico Madrid, celebrating their 75th Anniversary. Brazil won (3-0) with goals by Nunes, Edinho and Jorge Mendonça. The much talked about Luis Pereira lined up for the Spanish hosts vs. his country. He was somewhat responsible for Brazil’s third goal by giving away a free kick, from which Jorge Mendonça scored Brazil’s third goal.

Photo From: AS Color, Issue 303, March 8, 1977
(Luis Pereia in action for Atletico Madrid, 1976/77)

At the conclusion of the tour, Coutinho was satisfied claiming Brazil had proven that it is among the contenders. For him the most important aspect had been the experience of playing in five different countries with as many different styles. He added that the players had learned man-to-man marking that was essential for future success.
Although it was obvious to most that Brazil still lacked a genuine center forward, with Reinaldo not living up to the occasion. Midfielder Batista earned much praise for his performances.  As for Team Captain Roberto Rivellino, for much of the Tour, he had to contend with press reports of his contract negotiations with Fluminense, as New York Cosmos had apparently approached him.
No sooner had Brazil retuned that Coutinho finalized his squad on April 26th.
Ze Maria, Tarciso, Nunes and Romeu were out of the Finals squad. In their place came Zé Sérgio, Nelinho, Roberto Dinamite, Chicão and Valdir Peres as a backup goalkeeper.
As always the selections did not please everyone. Pele had been a vocal supporter of Marinho Chagas. Mario Zagallo stated that without any hesitation he would have selected Marinho Chagas, Paulo Cesar and Luis Pereira. Luis Pereira’s exclusion even baffled Argentina Manager Cesar Luis Menotti, who expressed his surprise, though he said he would not criticize the decisions of a colleague.
Within days, they played friendlies vs. Peru (May 1st, 3-0 win), Pernambuco State Team (May 13th, 0-0), Czechoslovakia (May 17th, 2-0 win) and Rio Grande do Sul State Team (May 25th, 2-2).
Even before the World Cup had begun, Brazil had not resolved all tactical issues. There were reports that Coutinho had taken each midfielder aside and asked one by one if they would play a Zagallo type left wing role, and all had refused. Apparently, he had even asked Rivellino if he would be willing play like 1970, in midfield rather than central role, and naturally Rivellino had refused.
At the World Cup, Brazil were disappointing in their first two matches vs. Sweden (1-1) and Spain (0-0). The Brazilian Press, including Pele working as a Television commentator, were up in arms for Brazil’s unimpressive displays and naturally pointed their fingers at Coutinho.
The night following the Spain match, there were unsubstantiated reports within the Brazil camp, that the Brazilian Sports Authority Admiral Helenio Nunes had taken control of team selection from the manager Coutinho. In addition, the reports suggested that Coutinho had offered to resign but was refused. There were also reports of a rift between Coutinho and Rivellino and Zico He still sat on the bench for the rest of the tournament, but as a member of a selection committee and stripped of powers. Once Brazil reached the second round and out of Mar Del Plate, they improved and defeated Peru and Poland, while holding the hosts Argentina to a scoreless tie. Of course, they were eliminated because of the controversial victory of Argentina over Peru (6-0). They finished on the Podium by beating Italy, but Third Place was a disappointment for a nation like Brazil.
After the finals Coutinho returned to club football and was appointed Manager of Flamengo. Months later in an interview, he denied the alleged ‘sacking’ during the finals, as well as any problems with Rivellino and Zico. No one will ever know what really happened during the closed meeting that night following the match vs. Spain.
In the end this European tour did not appear to have the desired effect, nor did it resolve any of the problems they already had (i.e. no center forward, weak in the wings, etc..)
Coutinho’s era is regarded with disdain by Brazilian Football purists and is synonymous as another of Brazil’s attempts at ‘Europeanization’ of its football at the expense of ‘jogo bonita’ (Much Like Sebastiano Lazaroni, over a decade later).
Claudio Pecego de Morais Coutinho was killed on November 27, 1981 in a scuba diving accident, while vacationing near Ipanema Beach, age just 42.

Photo From: kicker_WM-Sonderheft_1978
(Claudio Coutinho)

The selected squad for the European tour:
Emerson Leão (Sociedade Esportiva Palmeiras- São Paulo) 
Carlos’ Roberto Gallo (Associação Atlética Ponte Preta- São Paulo)

Zé Maria José Maria Rodrigues Alve (Sport Club Corinthians Paulista- São Paulo)  
Antônio Dias dos Santos Toninho  (Clube de Regatas Flamengo- Rio de Janeiro) 
José ‘OscarBernardi (Associação Atlética Ponte Preta-
São Paulo)
Carlos da Silva Braga Abel  (Club de Regatas Vasco da Gama - Rio de Janeiro) 
João Justino Amaral dos Santos
(Sport Club Corinthians Paulista- São Paulo)  
Edino Nazareth Filho Edinho
(Fluminense Football Club- Rio de Janeiro)   
José Rodrigues Neto  (Botafogo de Futebol e Regatas- Rio de Janeiro)
José Fernando Polozi (Associação Atlética Ponte Preta- São Paulo)

Roberto Rivellino (Fluminense Football Club- Rio de Janeiro)   
Antonio Carlos ‘Toninho Cerezo’ (Clube Atlético Mineiro-
Belo Horizonte-Minas Gerais
João ‘Batista da Silva (Sport Club Internacional- Porto Alegre)

José Tarciso de Souza
(Grêmio Foot-Ball Porto Alegrense) 
Gilberto Alves Gil (Botafogo de Futebol e Regatas- Rio de Janeiro
José Reinaldo de Lima  (Clube Atlético Mineiro- Belo Horizonte-Minas Gerais)  
Artur Antunes Coimbra Zico
(Clube de Regatas Flamengo- Rio de Janeiro) 
Jorge Pinto Mendonça (Sociedade Esportiva Palmeiras- São Paulo) 
João Batista Nunes de Oliveira (Santa Cruz Futebol Clube-Recife)   
Romeu Evangelista (Sport Club Corinthians Paulista- São Paulo)  
Dirceu José Guimarães
(Club de Regatas Vasco da Gama - Rio de Janeiro)  

The Matches on Tour:

April 1, 1978- Paris – Parc des Princes
Referee:  Patrick Partridge (England)
France 1-Brazil 0 France 1-Brazil 0 (Michel Platini 86)
France : 1-Jean-Paul Bertrand-Demanes, 2-Patrick Battiston (12- François Bracci 61st), 3-Maxime Bossis,  4-Patrice Rio, 5-Christian Lopez, 6-Jean-Marc Guillou,  7-Bruno Baaronchelli, 8-Henri  Michel (captain)  (13-Jean Petit 67th), 9-Marc Berdoll, 10-Michel Platini, 11- Loïc  Amisse (15-Didier Six 80th )
Coach: Michel Hidalgo
Other Subs: Dominique Dropsy , Olivier Rouyer

Brazil : 1- Leão, 2-Toninho, 3-Oscar, 4-Amaral, 5-Cerezo, 6-Edinho, 7-Tarciso (18-Gil 46th ) , 8-Zico, 9-Reinaldo (20-Nunes 61st), 10-Rivellino (captain), 11-Dirceu

April 5, 1978- Hamburg – Volksparkstadion  
Referee:  Karoly Palotai (Hungary)
West Germany 0-Brazil 1  West Germany 0-Brazil 1 (Nunes 76)
West Germany :  1-Josef ‘Sepp’ Maier , 2-Hans-Hubert ‘Berti’ Vogts (captain), 4-Rolf Rüssmann, 5-Manfred Kaltz, 3-Bernhard Dietz (14-Karl-Heinz Förster  77th), 6-Rainer Bonhof , 8-Erich Beer  (18-Ronald Worm 80th), 10-Heinz Flohe,   7-Rudiger Abramczik (17-Hans Peter ‘Hansi’ Müller 52nd), 9-Klaus Fischer , 11-Karl-Heinz Rummenigge
Coach: Helmut Schön

Brazil : 1- Leão, 13-Ze Maria, 3-Oscar, 4-Amaral, 5-Cerezo, 6-Edinho, 18-Gil, 8-Zico, 9-Reinaldo (20-Nunes 67), 10-Rivellino (captain)(15-Batista 46), 11-Dirceu

April 10, 1978- Jeddah – Nacional Stadium
Referee:  Almozarhan (Saudi Arabia)
Al Ahly (Saudi Arabia) 1-Brazil 6 (Fuad Rizik 84 / Toninho Cerezo 33, Nunes 37,49, Gil 39, Jorge Mendonça 79, Toninho 82)
Al Ahly (Saudi Arabia):  Ali Ahmed (Adel Rawas), Ed Fahd, Abdel razak, Wahio Johar, Ibrahim Meriki (Mohamed Bakhit), Ahmed Sagir, Kala Traik (Jamal hamza), Fuad Rizik, Emad Khogall, Saoud Sammaro (Habi Saad), Amin Dabi
Coach : Didi (Brazil)

Brazil : Carlos (Leão), Ze Maria (Toninho), Oscar (Abel), Amaral, Edinho, Cerezo (Rivellino), Batista, Gil, Zico (Jorge Mendonça), Nunes, Romeu

April 13, 1978- Milan- San Siro
Referee:  Alberto Michelotti (Italy)
Internazionale Milano FC (Italy) 0-Brazil  (Nunes 24, Dirceu 47)
Internazionale Milano FC (Italy): Ivano Bordon (Renato Cipollini 76th), Nazzareno Canuti, Graziano Bini, Adriano Fedele (Angiolino Gasparini 25th), Giuseepe Baresi, Gabriele Oriali, Giampiero Marini (Giorgio Roselli 43rd), Claudio Merlo (Odoacre Chierico 62nd), Giuseppe Pavoni (Roberto Tricella 71st), Pietro Anastasi (Carlo Muraro 46th), Alessandro Altobelli
Coach: Eugenio Bersellini

Brazil : Leão, Ze Maria , Oscar ,Amaral (Polozi 46th), Rodrigues Neto, Cerezo, Rivellino(captain) (Batista 70th), Gil (Tarciso 76th), Zico (Jorge Mendonça 70th), Nunes, Dirceu

April 19, 1978- London - Wembley
Referee:  Charles George Rainier Corver (Holland)
England 1-Brazil 1  England 1-Brazil 1 (Kevin Keegan 70 / Gil 10)

England :  1-Joe Corrigan,  2- Mick Mills, 3-Trevor Cherry, 4-Brian Greenhoff , 5-David Watson , 6-Tony Currie, 7-Kevin Keegan (captain), 8-Steve Coppell, 9-Bob Latchford, 10-Trevor Francis , 11-Peter Barnes 
Coach: Ronald Greenwood

Brazil : 1-Leão, 13-Ze Maria , 14-Abel, 4-Amaral,  6-Edinho, 5-Cerezo, 10-Rivellino (captain), 18-Gil, 8-Zico, 20-Nunes (17- Batista 60th), 11-Dirceu
Booked : Edinho 5- Ze Maria 35-Cerezo 50 –Batista 70, Abel 89

April 21, 1978- Madrid-Estadio Vicente Calderon
Referee:  Luis Montesinos (Spain)
Atletico Madrid (Spain) 0-Brazil  3 (Nunes 29, Edinho 52, Jorge Mendonça 73)
Atletico Madrid (Spain): Miguel Reina, Marcelino Perez, Luis Pereira, Eusebio Bejarano, Jose Capon, Marcial Pina (Robi 68th), Alberto Fernandez, Eugenio Leal, Ruben Ayala, Leivinha (Juan Jose Rubio 68th), Ruben Cano (Francisco Bermejo 46th)
Coach: Luis Aragones

Brazil : Leão (Carlos 46th), , Ze Maria  (Toninho 68th), Abel, Amaral, Edinho (Rodrigues Neto 80th), Batista, Dirceu, Gil (Tarciso 75th), Zico (Jorge Mendonça 46th), Nunes (Reinaldo 46th), Romeu


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.