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Brazil missing midfield duo
Published : 24 Jun 2010 20:00:03
Brazil will be missing midfield duo Kaka and Elano for their final Group G fixture against Portugal on Friday.
The influential AC Milan playmaker is suspended for the game after being sent off in his team's 3-1 triumph over the Ivory Coast, where Elano suffered a shin injury following a robust challenge from Cheik Tiote.
Meanwhile, Portugal manager Carlos Queiroz will be without Deco as the Brazil-born midfielder is still struggling with a hip problem that forced him to miss the 7-0 thrashing of North Korea.
The Portuguese need only a point from the game in Durban to be assured of joining Brazil in the last 16 of the World Cup.
However, despite being a booking away from missing the second round should his team qualify, Queiroz will not rest star player Cristiano Ronaldo.
"Portugal are playing with a view to qualify," said Queiroz. "Ronaldo has to play his normal football and play just as he did in the game where he picked up a yellow card."
Of Deco, he added: "We hope and believe that Deco will be able to recover in time for the knock-out round."
Brazil may have already qualified from the last 16 of the World Cup, but Kaka has warned Portugal to still expect a battle when the two sides meet on Friday.
The Canarinha lead Group G, two points clear of second-place Portugal, who need a win to guarantee the top spot in the pool.
"Brazil will go out to win," said Kaka. "This final group game is important for us to finish first. A draw would also be good but a win would give us the strength to go into the knock-out round really motivated."