Chelsea have tried to deflect blame away from the midfield energizer bunny commonly known as Ramires in the case of Scolari vs. Ramires's perceived attitude and dedication to his country, but it seems that Mourinho's PR work has yet to have its desired effect.
Earlier today, the Brazil Men's National Team manager named his 20-man squad to face Switzerland in the upcoming friendly in Basel and it's essentially unchanged from the squad that won the Confederations Cup. While it's understandable why Scolari would want to stick with the winning combinations, a meaningless friendly would've been the perfect opportunity to start repairing the relationship between Ramires and the national team. Oh well.
The one new face in the squad is PSG's Maxwell, while four other fringe players have been dropped. The team, in full:
Goalkeepers: Julio Cesar (Queens Park Rangers), Jefferson (Botafogo).
Midfielders: Fernando (Shakhtar Donetsk), Hernanes (Lazio), Luiz Gustavo (Bayern Munich), Paulinho (Tottenham Hotspur), Oscar (Chelsea), Lucas (Paris Saint-Germain), Bernard (Atletico Mineiro), Jean (Fluminense)
Strikers: Hulk (Zenit), Fred (Fluminense), Neymar (Barcelona), Jo (Atletico Mineiro)
Although this surely is disappointing for Ramires on a personal level, it's beneficial from our perspective as he won't be joining the legion of Chelsea players called away to international duty just a few days before the kickoff of the 2013/14 Premier League season. With FIFA scheduling a useless round of friendlies for Wednesday, August 14, it's nice to know that we'll have at least one important player fully rested and fit to face Hull City on the following Sunday.