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Neymar would make Copa America finalists Brazil better, says Casemiro

05:24 GMT+3 06/07/2019
Neymar Brazil Qatar Friendly 05062019
While a host of great players have guided the Selecao to the cusp of glory, the midfielder believes they would be stronger with the PSG star

Casemiro believes Brazil would be even better with Neymar as he lauded the quality of the squad ahead of Sunday's Copa America final against Peru.

Despite being without Neymar, who is sidelined with an ankle injury, Tite's men and the tournament hosts have reached the decider.

While Casemiro hailed the forward's quality, the midfielder also praised the talent in Brazil's squad.

"The quality of Neymar, indisputably we have to say he is the best Brazilian player," he told a news conference on Friday.

"If the kid is OK, I'll tell you, it's almost impossible to stop him. He is a player of extreme quality, already demonstrated for all, already demonstrated in the Brazilian squad.

"But, of course, we have other great players. We have great players.

"If Neymar were here, it would be better for us and it would help a lot more, but he isn't and we have to overcome his absence, overcome this difficulty.

"We have created a game identity, but if he were here it would be much better."

Brazil head to the Maracana with plenty of confidence, having thrashed Peru 5-0 in the group stage two weeks ago.

Casemiro, who opened the scoring in that win in Sao Paulo, said Brazil needed to avoid changing their approach in the final.

"You have to know the time to suffer, you have to know the time to attack, you have to know the time to defend," he said.

"Above all, we are creating a very solid team at the back. When I say solid back, it's not just the defenders, everyone is committed. That's it, don't lose our characteristics.

"We don't have to do anything different from what we're doing, not only in relation to the last matches, but for the last two, three years.

"We built a good average of wins, few losses. We don't have to do anything different. We have to play our football. We know there is a great team as an opponent, but it is our football."