Brazil is said to be close to selecting its three over-age players for Rio 2016 and Barcelona superstar Neymar is one of the favorites to make the Brazilian Olympic team.
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According to Universo Online, who cite the Brazilian soccer federation and Olympic and national team coach Dunga, Inter Milan center back Miranda and Internacional goalkeeper Alisson are also expected to be selected for the first summer Olympics to be held in South America.
The ruling at the Olympics stipulates that all but three players on the team must be born on or after Jan. 1, 1993.
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Neymar, 23, has repeatedly spoken of his interest in representing his nation at the Olympics and it seems like he will get his wish, although requesting time off from his duties with Barca may be tricky as the Olympics will coincide with the start of the 2016-17 La Liga season.
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Nevertheless, Brazil has never won Olympic gold in soccer and given the fact that this tournament is on home soil, the home crowd will be desperate to see their team succeed and finish on top of the podium. With Neymar on board, a gold medal seems much more attainable.
Here’s more from our friends over at Olympic Talk:
Any over-age player must be released by his club team to be eligible for the Olympics, but with Brazil hosting the Games and seeking its first Olympic soccer title, that seems likely.
Neymar has repeatedly expressed interest in playing at the Rio Games.
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 2014 World Cup.
Brazil, which has won five World Cups, took Olympic silver in 1984, 1988 and 2012 and bronze in 1996 and 2008.