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FOOTBALL

Brazil leave out Ronaldinho for Swedish friendly

Brazil coach Dunga on Tuesday left out Barcelona star Ronaldinho from a squad to face Sweden in a March 26th friendly in London.

With an eye on blooding new stars for the Olympics, such as AC Milan striker Alexandre ‘Pato’, Dunga said he wanted to try new options for the Swedish encounter to mark 50 years since Brazil beat the Scandinavians for their first World Cup title.

“Ronaldinho has been injured and is getting his form back so it’s important he gets back to his best for helping us out in June,” said Dunga, in allusion to World Cup qualifiers this summer.

“We are trying to give more opportunities to Brazil-based players,” added Dunga as he unveiled a 23-man squad which includes Liverpool’s Lucas and Chelsea defender Alex as well as Arsenal midfielder Gilberto Silva.

The match will be played at Silva’s home ground, Emirates Stadium.

Sweden’s coach Lars Lagerbäck is to announce his squad on March 19th.

FOOTBALL

Croatian player tests positive ahead of Sweden match

Croatian midfielder Marcelo Brozovic tested positive for Covid-19 on Friday, a day ahead of the country's Nations League match with Sweden, the Croatian football federation (HNS) said.

Croatian player tests positive ahead of Sweden match
Croatian midfielder Marcelo Brozovic (left) tested positive for coronavirus on Friday. Photo: Miguel Medina / AFP
“Brozovic's Inter Milan and Swedish epidemiologists were informed about the positive test,” an HNS statement said.
   
The player's positive result came two days after defender Domagoj Vida was informed of a positive Covid-19 test after playing the first half of a friendly with Turkey in Istanbul.
   
Apart from Brozovic, 27, one staff member also tested positive.
   
They were both isolated from other members of the national team.
   
After Sweden, Croatia play another Nations League game against Portugal on Tuesday.
   
Croatia, runners-up at the 2018 World Cup, are third in their Nations League group which also includes France, the team that beat them to the World Cup, Cristiano Ronaldo's Portugal and Sweden.
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