Brazil Football Confederation confirmed the departure of head coach Tite after the country’s shock exit in the quarterfinals of the FIFA World Cup 2022 against Croatia. However, the decision did not solely rest on the fact that Brazil had not done as well in the tournament, but it was decided well before the start of the tournament that Tite will be leaving after Qatar 2022.
Tite, who took up the job in 2016, led Brazil to a Copa America triumph in 2019 beating Peru in the final. Despite entering the 2018 and 2022 editions of the World Cup as favourites to win the tournament, they couldn’t go past the quarterfinal stages. Belgium knocked them out in 2018 and Croatia got the better of them on penalties.
Neymar, who represented Brazil under Tite across both these tournament and the Copa America triumph in 2019, penned an emotional note for the departing manager. He called Tite one of the best coaches he has ever had and thanked him for all his teachings.
“Before we met in person, we played against each other many times and I thought you were very annoying! Because you put together a team to mark me, you did everything to beat me. I knew you as a coach and knew that you were very good, but as a person you are great! You know who I am and that’s what matters to me.
“I want to thank you openly for everything, all the teachings that you have given us – there were so many. You will always be one of the best coaches I’ve ever had or will ever have,” Neymar said.
Brazil kick-started the tournament on a fantastic note. They defeated Switzerland and Serbia in the group stages without conceding a goal and went on to defeat South Korea by an emphatic 4-1 margin. However, things did not go as per plan for the Selecao in the game against Croatia.
The match went into extra time with the scorecard reading 0-0. Neymar broke the deadlock and scored what seemed to be the winner in the second period of the extra time, but minutes later, Petkovic equalised for Croatia which took the game to penalties. Rodrygo and Marquinhos missed their shots for Brazil, which sent the five time champions out.