Gilette Brasil Global Tour

Brazil’s World Cup defender Maxwell explains why he has to win two things very quickly; a place in Felipe Scolari’s starting XI and the trust of his countrymen

Paris Saint-Germain left-back Maxwell says host nation Brazil will only be thinking about themselves when the World Cup kicks off in 11 days time.

For regardless of the opposition, the former Barcelona defender says the Selecao have to concentrate on their own game throughout if they are to have any chance of collecting a sixth World Cup.

“We’ll only have great teams (in the tournament),” said the 32-year-old left back. “Eight previous world champions will be in play, but we have to think about our first three group opponents first: Croatia, Mexico and Cameroon.

“But it all comes down to us. It all comes down to how we will behave once we get on the pitch,” admitted Maxwell, who says Brazil are in a good place, with home advantage, a settled squad and an excellent coach in Felipe Scolari.

“The trust and relationship between the group and the coach is great,” said Maxwell, fresh from a season in which he helped PSG to the Ligue 1 title.

“It’s important to have a staff with such experience. And we have been trying to profit from the motivation the people give us.

“Let’s try to do our best on the pitch, with energy and dedication. This is what matter the most right now.”

Maxwell, however, might not be one of those immediately on the pitch. The man who has won league titles in Holland, Italy, Spain and latterly France, finds himself behind Real Madrid’s left-sided defender Marcelo in Scolari’s vision.

But the 32-year-old says he hasn’t given up on playing in front of a home audience this summer, even if Marcelo may take some moving.

“I know that Marcelo got the place. It’s hard to imagine that I could get my place during the World Cup, but if the chance comes, Felipao knows he can count on me.”

He added; “I have built my career in Europe, so I have been trying to get the people’s trust.

“The important thing is trying to add something here, to be acknowledged. It will come in time, you can’t force this kind of thing, (but) I have an unique opportunity to win an unique competition. That’s what I’m aiming for here.”

And Maxwell acknowledges he is fortunate to be part of the current group, representing Brazil on home soil in the game’s biggest competition.

“It’s hard to see some fellow players who are going to miss the World Cup. The important thing is to work well, and try to prevent any setbacks.

“And, when the matches come, to be 100 per cent focused and forget any problems. We have been doing our part on trying to prevent some situations, and getting in better shape physically.”