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Neymar stripped of Brazil captaincy after Rennes fan fracas
Neymar stripped of Brazil captaincy after Rennes fan fracas

Neymar stripped of Brazil captaincy, Dani Alves handed the armband

Written by Gideon Sarpong
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Neymar will not captain Brazil during next month's Copa America, with Dani Alves handed the armband for the showpiece South American tournament on home soil.

Paris Saint-Germain superstar Neymar was named permanent Brazil captain by head coach Tite in September 2018, however, he has been replaced by 36-year-old club and country team-mate Alves.

In a statement released on Monday, the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) said: "The decision was communicated to Neymar by Tite on Saturday."

The announcement comes after a turbulent end to the season for Neymar at Ligue 1 champions PSG, where coach Thomas Tuchel has ruled out the former Barcelona star becoming captain.

Neymar – who scored 23 goals in all competitions this season after recovering from a foot injury – is set to serve a three-match ban for striking an opposition supporter after last month's Coupe de France defeat against Rennes.

The 27-year-old also appeared to be weighed down by the burden of expectations on his shoulders during Brazil's World Cup campaign last year as the Selecao lost in the quarter-finals.

Brazil are set to host the Copa América, with the eight-time champions – who failed to progress beyond the group stage in 2016 – drawn alongside Bolivia, Peru and Venezuela in Group A.

Tite's Brazil will open the tournament against Bolivia in Sao Paulo on June 14.