Raphinha wants to give Brazil reason to dance at World Cup

Photo by Lionel Hahn/Getty Images

Raphinha hopes Brazil will have reason to dance in celebration at the World Cup as he joked Tite's side have 10 routines rehearsed for goals.

Brazil are among the tournament favourites in Qatar ahead of their Group G opener on Thursday against Serbia as the Selecao aim for a first World Cup triumph since 2002.

Barcelona winger Raphinha was one of many to celebrate in support of Vinicius Junior, who was told in September by a Spanish journalist to stop dancing "to respect your mates and stop playing the monkey".

Gabriel Jesus, Neymar and Richarlison – all members of Tite's 26-man squad in the Middle East – were other notable supporters of Brazil team-mate Vinicius.

Raphinha appears a likely contender to start for the five-time world champions and he intends to give Brazil further reason to celebrate in style at the World Cup.

"To tell you the truth, we already have dances prepared for up to the 10th goal," an upbeat Raphinha said on Monday.

"We have some 10 dances prepared for each match, one for the first, one for the second, one for the third ... If we score more than 10, then we'll have to start innovating."

Pedro, Antony and Gabriel Martinelli are the other attacking options at Tite's disposal and Raphinha has no doubts Brazil will go out to play free-flowing football.

"With Vinicius we gain more speed on the attack, while with [Lucas] Paqueta we have more control near the midfield," former Leeds United forward Raphinha added.

"But Brazil has a characteristic of always being offensive-minded, no matter who gets to play."

Richarlison, like Raphinha, will be a World Cup debutant for Brazil after scoring 17 goals in his 38 appearances for the Selecao since his debut in 2018.

The Tottenham striker wants to produce performances befitting of the number-nine shirt handed to him as he aims to follow in the footsteps of the legendary Ronaldo Nazario.

"When you wear the number nine jersey with the Brazilian national team, all you want to do is score goals," Richarlison said. "With these team-mates, I'm sure the goals will come."

Neymar came into criticism for posting a photo with six stars on his shorts, referencing a hopeful Brazil triumph at the World Cup, but Richarlison has no problem admitting the Selecao's hopes.

"We are dreamers, we are going after this sixth star no matter what people are going to say," he added.