Scolari refuses to rule out Adriano’s return

Brasilia, Feb 20: Brazil coach Luiz Felipe Scolari refused to rule out striker Adriano’s chances of playing in this year’s World Cup.

Adriano, who has not represented the national team since 2010, played his first match for nearly two years last week with a late appearance as a substitute for Atletico Paranaense in their 1-0 victory over The Strongest in the Copa Libertadores.

“There are lots of stories. Everybody lobbies for one player or another. We all do it when we want a player to do well,” Xinhua quoted Scolari as saying during a press conference Wednesday.

When asked if Adriano could be considered for the World Cup, Scolari replied: “I consider every Brazilian player. Some more and others less.

“There are some that haven’t played for some years. I am looking at everything. But I have to make my observations in accordance with a series of factors, not just one.”

Scolari’s comments follow claims by press that the 65-year-old earlier this week sought Atletico Paranaense’s football director Antonio Lopes to discuss Adriano’s fitness.

Adriano, 31, was once considered one of the best strikers in world football.

He has scored 27 goals from 48 matches for Brazil and won the Golden Ball award for the best player at both the 2004 Copa America and 2005 Confederations Cup, in which he also top-scored.

But injury and disciplinary problems have prompted a rapid fall from grace for the former Inter Milan forward.

IANS