Bolivia may have missed out on another World Cup, yet again but Martin Bielsa did not miss out on his dream; lining up hands on shoulders with the very best in the world, after all, they are brothers.
Bielsa, who is a Brazilian by the virtue of birth and represented them at the U-20 level was allowed to take a team photo with the La Seleçào players. The Bolivian international joined the excellent Brazilian players who’d picked up a World Cup ticket before their trip to La Paz, the Bolivian capital played out a stalemate after 90 mins as neither of the two sides could break the deadlock.
The Brazilians are top of the standings after playing their 17th of the 18 matches to be played in the qualifiers and are leading second-placed Uruguay with a heavy ten points. Bolivia on their part has failed to earn an automatic World Cup ticket by not being amongst the first four teams on the log or get a playoff spot by placing 5th, a spot all but confirmed after Argentina’s struggles against Peru.
The Brazilians will hope to consolidate on a beautiful qualifying run with a respectable and victorious outing in Russia in 2018 with their confidence on a high after winning almost all their qualifying games with a pool of talent that could match any in the world today.
With captain Neymar in his prime and seeming to hit the best form of his life and several others making decent shifts in their respective club sides, it promises to be a big one for Brazil even if they will have to live with the disappointments of the past and that may be difficult to put behind, especially their 7-1 humiliating loss to Germany on home soil.
Bielsa must have thought he made a wrong choice for representing Bolivia after being among his own and feeling just like one of them, after all, he’s a son of the soil but he hasn’t, for that team may be too star-studded for just another player not at his very best.
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