Scolari Resigns as Brazil Coach

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By Opeyemi Oladunjoye

Brazil coach, Luiz Felipe Scolari, has resigned, the country’s football federation (CBF) has confirmed.

Scolari, 65, won the tournament with Brazil in 2002 but could only lead the hosts to a fourth place finish at this year’s event, amidst a humiliating 7-1 thrashing by Germany in the semi-finals and a 3-0 defeat to the Netherlands in the play-off.

“Luiz Felipe Scolari and his fellow coaching staff surrendered their positions to the board,” the CBF said in a statement. “Scolari and his entire coaching staff deserve our respect and gratitude.

“They were responsible for returning to the Brazilian people your love for the national team, despite not having achieved our greatest goal.”

Scolari’s contract was set to expire after the tournament, but the CBF vice-president, Marco Polo del Nero last week offered the manager his full backing following the humiliating defeat to Germany. However, Scolari himself had offered no assurances about his position in the wake of what he called “the worst day of my life”.

Scolari first took over the Brazil side in 2001 and guided them to World Cup success a year later, beating Germany 2-0 in the 2002 final in Yokohama, Japan. After spells in charge of Portugal, Premier League side Chelsea, Bunyodkor of Uzbekistan and Brazilian club Palmeiras, he resumed control of the national team in 2012.

Brazil hosted and won the Confederations Cup in 2013, beating Spain 3-0 in the final, and were favourites to win a sixth World Cup. They finished top of their group after two wins and a draw from their three matches, before edging past Chile on penalties in the last 16. They beat Colombia 2-1 in the quarter-finals, but lost top goalscorer Neymar to a spine injury and captain Thiago Silva to suspension.

In the semi-final, Brazil were 5-0 down to Joachim Low’s Germany after only 29 minutes, before losing 7-1 – their joint-heaviest loss ever and first home competitive defeat in 39 years.

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