Latin America

Ronaldinho sets sights on Olympics

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Veteran playmaker Ronaldinho is hoping his performance for an inexperienced Brazil side against Bosnia-Herzegovina Tuesday night will enhance his chances of making the Olympic squad.

The former Barcelona and AC Milan star has made no secret of his desire to feature in London this summer after playing at the Games in Beijing four years ago, when he claimed a bronze medal, and Sydney in 2000.

"It is a big competition. We are motivated to be there, of course,'' said Ronaldinho, who now plays for Flamengo.

"I will do my best to play the Olympics one more time.''

Coach Mano Menezes also appears to have one eye on London after naming eight players under 23 years of age in his squad for the Bosnia-Herzegovina clash which takes place in St Gallen, Switzerland.

Striker Leandro Damiao is hoping a strong display will also further his claims.

"I don't know too much about our opponents but the pressure of playing for the national team is always heavy,'' he said.

"A game like this is important for further nominations and that is why I am very motivated."

Bosnia-Herzegovina may be a mystery to Damiao but Neymar highlighted the ability of their striker Edin Dzeko, who plays his club football for Barclays Premier League leaders Manchester City.

He told Globoesporte.com: "He is a big player. He plays for a big team like
Manchester City and it is not by chance.

"Anyway, I hope he can do nothing in this match so Brazil can win.''

Santos star Neymar admitted the cold weather in Switzerland was a different experience for the Brazilians.

"I have never played in snow, but it is tough enough when you play in cold temperatures,'' he added.

"Everything is worthwhile, however, when you play for the national team.''

Bosnia-Herzegovina boss Safet Susic, whose side lost to Portugal in the play-offs for Euro 2012, will be without left-sided midfielder Senad Lulic after he sustained an injury playing for Lazio against Fiorentina at the weekend.

Lulic, who joined up with the squad regardless, was unhappy to be missing the chance to face the five-time world champions.

He told SportSport.ba: "It seems to me the injury was serious. I feel pain.

"Tuesday I will have a detailed medical examination after which I will know
how long I will be out.

"To my great regret, I will not be available to coach Susic. I feel really sorry, but life goes on.''

Susic is hoping his players do themselves justice against high-quality opposition.

"Players do not need more motivation other than the fact they are playing against Brazil,'' he said.

"Our first goal is to leave a good impression.''

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