Vinicius Junior called up for Brazil for 1st time

              Real forward Vinicius Junior, right, and Barcelona defender Nelson Semedo challenge for the ball during the Copa del Rey semifinal second leg soccer match between Real Madrid and FC Barcelona at the Bernabeu stadium in Madrid, Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Vinicius Junior has been called up to the Brazilian national team for the first time for friendly matches against Panama and the Czech Republic.

The 18-year-old striker has become a key player for Real Madrid this season.

Brazil coach Tite also called up midfielder Felipe Anderson and striker Richarlison.

Brazil is preparing to host the Copa America in June.