Jul 28, 2014, 9:32 AM EDT
Neymar‘s broken vertebra prevented him from leading Brazil to a World Cup triumph at home, but he may get another shot at the Olympics.
Brazil’s Olympic coach, Alexandre Gallo, said he wants the superstar striker to be one of his three over-age players on an otherwise 23-and-under team in Rio de Janeiro, according to O Globo.
Brazil, which has won five World Cups, has never won Olympic gold in soccer. It won silver in 1984, 1988 and 2012 and bronze in 1996 and 2008.
Neymar, then 20, was part of the 2012 Olympic Team favored to win gold in London that lost to Mexico in the final.
Some nations take greater advantage of the Olympic rule that allows three over-age players more than others. In 2012, Brazil used its exceptions on three exceptional players — Hulk, Marcelo and Thiago Silva – who started for Brazil in the just-completed World Cup.
An issue in 2016 that was not present in 2012, however, is the special Copa America Centenario, the 100th anniversary of the tournament that crowns the champion of South America.
It’s the biggest tournament of the year for Brazil’s senior national team, and its presence also puts U.S. goalie Tim Howard‘s chances of playing in Rio at risk.
Copa America Centenario takes place from June 3-26. Soccer at the 2016 Olympics takes place from Aug. 3-19. Neymar plays for Barcelona in La Liga, whose season usually begins in late August.
That would be one busy spring and summer for Neymar, who would be the host nation’s most recognizable Olympian should he suit up in Rio.
Oct 25, 2014, 11:44 PM EDT
Machida breaks record for winning margin; U.S. matches its longest drought.
Oct 25, 2014, 4:02 PM EDT
Two Russians lead the way.
Oct 25, 2014, 1:04 PM EDT
Miller, 37, had documented back problems in the offseason.
Oct 25, 2014, 11:46 AM EDT
Olympic slalom champion and World Cup overall champion have matching times.
Oct 24, 2014, 10:59 PM EDT
Machida can become first repeat Skate America men’s winner since 2001.
Oct 24, 2014, 10:31 AM EDT
Austrian eyes history, while Ted Ligety, Bode Miller look to fill resume holes.
Oct 24, 2014, 8:42 AM EDT
New rule allows women to compete in four-man bobsled this year.
Oct 23, 2014, 8:11 PM EDT
Sochi disappointment gave Davis a deeper appreciation for past success going into post-Olympic season.
Oct 23, 2014, 3:14 PM EDT
Felix came back from torn hamstring to post the fastest 200m time since the London Olympics.
Oct 23, 2014, 12:58 PM EDT
Several U.S. Olympians dot the field in Grand Prix series opener.
Oct 23, 2014, 11:59 AM EDT
Pistorius is banned from competing during his sentence, even if not in jail, by Paralympic and South African Olympic Committees.
Oct 23, 2014, 9:52 AM EDT
Expect to see more of Mikaela Shiffrin and Lindsey Vonn than last year, but neither appears a threat to the world’s best overall skier.
Oct 23, 2014, 9:49 AM EDT
Kosovo, which gained independence from Serbia in 2008, could field an Olympic delegation for the first time in 2016.
Oct 23, 2014, 9:31 AM EDT
Gardner’s Olympic medals were sold last year.
Oct 22, 2014, 5:06 PM EDT
Olympic ski slopestyle champion also needed rabies shots after dog bite.
Oct 22, 2014, 3:25 PM EDT
Kosovo has never competed at the Olympics as an independent nation.
Oct 22, 2014, 1:22 PM EDT
Vincenzo Nibali, Chris Froome, Alberto Contador have mixed opinions.
Oct 22, 2014, 10:09 AM EDT
Team will make its season debut with Skate America this weekend.
Oct 22, 2014, 9:44 AM EDT
Zubkov, 40, had already said he wouldn’t compete this season.
Oct 22, 2014, 9:16 AM EDT
Tarmoh was part of the infamous tie at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials.
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