Schweinsteiger: Neymar's injury could drive Brazil to World Cup glory
JUL 07, 2014 4:56a ET
Germany take on Brazil in the opening semifinal in Belo Horizonte on Tuesday but the hosts will be without Neymar after he suffered a back injury against Colombia to rule him out of the tournament.
Schweinsteiger thinks it is a shame that such a world-class player will not be able to take his place on the big stage, and does not necessarily think it will work to Germany's advantage as he expects Brazil to find added inspiration.
"We're all feeling deeply saddened that he won't be able to play," said the Germany midfielder about Neymar.
"It's always best when the greatest players are on the pitch for the great matches. I think his team-mates are going to rally around even more now with him out, and they'll want to win the World Cup for him. They'll derive strength from that."
"The loss of Neymar can create strength and weld together the team."
Brazil's performances may not have been thrilling but Schweinsteiger is ready for a tough test against a team that has had phenomenal support.
Schweinsteiger also feels that another major positive for Brazil is the coaching team of Luiz Felipe Scolari and technical director Carlos Alberto Parreira.
He said: "They've got a lot of strengths. They've got the individual class of every player on their team. They've got a lot of great players.
"They've got two great players with Luiz Felipe Scolari and Carlos Alberto Parreira. Both of them have won the World Cup.
"I believe the team with the most intelligent coach will win the tournament. Plus Brazil have home advantage.
"I think the biggest opponent will be the experience of their coaches."