Maradona: Brazil must prove they are no one-man team
The Argentina great believes the rest of the Selecao must step up their performance levels and claims Scolari should start Fernandinho and Ramires against Chile
Diego Maradona has warned Brazil that any overreliance on Neymar could prove costly at the World Cup.
The Barcelona star has scored four goals so far in the tournament as he lit up the group stages on home soil, ensuring the Selecao claimed top spot in Group A to book a last-16 clash with Chile.
The 1986 World Cup winner feels that Brazil have been unconvincing on the whole so far and must not come to depend on Neymar if they are to keep their hopes of a sixth global title alive.
"Brazil have mounted many moves, scored seven goals and Neymar has got four of them," he wrote in the Times of India.
"They left gaps wide open in the first half against Cameroon and were not comfortable against Croatia.
"A lot will obviously depend on Neymar. He will be heavily marked and how he handles that will go a long way in deciding the outcome of this match. He has been the Messi of this side, but overreliance isn't a good sign.
"Brazil need men to rally around him and it's time to show they are no one-man army. I don't agree with Scolari's selection of Paulinho and Hulk. He has better substitutes in Fernandinho and Ramires and the former proved that against Cameroon."
Chile have won numerous admirers after their performances in the tournament so far, most notably their 2-0 win over Spain that knocked the 2010 winners out.
Maradona has also enjoyed la Roja's approach to matches and feels that they are capable of upsetting the hosts in the second-round match in Belo Horizonte.
"Chile have been the surprise pack," 53-year-old continued.
"They have kept their defence tight and shown discipline and enterprise in the midfield. [Jorge] Sampaoli has instilled tactical maturity in the side. This pack knows how to wait and when to go for the kill.
"Their wing backs are encouraged to move up and create chances for strikers A. Sanchez and E. Vargas. If A. Vidal is fit, they can spell danger for any team.
"Brazil know this and that's why Scolari has acknowledged that his team didn't want to face Chile in the second round. Despite topping the group and Neymar going great guns, Brazil have looked vulnerable in patches and Scolari knows that this Chilean lot is capable of punishing mistakes."
World Cup 2014