South American football expert Tim Vickery has explained that Richarlison gets the nod to start for Brazil because the Tottenham man is exactly the sort of penalty-box operator that Tite’s men need upfront. 

Richarlison has made the number nine spot for Brazil his own over the last 12 months and his goal record for the Selecao over the course of 2022 is extremely impressive.

(Photo by ANP via Getty Images)

The 25-year-old proved in the opening group game against Serbia just why he is favoured, netting a brace, which included a brilliant overhead kick. However, despite his heroics, Richarlison has not been short of critics, with many questioning his place in Brazil’s starting eleven

Craig Burley told ESPN FC last week that he would take Gabriel Jesus over the Tottenham man ‘every day’ despite his brace against Serbia while Antonio Cassano described the former Everton man as ‘terrible’ on Bobo TV.

Vickery has now come to Richarlison’s defence, explaining that the Spurs star perfectly compliments the other attacking options that Brazil have at their disposal.

When asked why Richarlison gets the nod to start, the journalist told GiveMeSport: “Because he gives them what they want. He’s like a racehorse wearing blinkers. He doesn’t think about anything else apart from scoring goals.

“They don’t need a player in that position who can elaborate because they’ve got that. What they want is a penalty box operator – simple, uncomplicated and strong.”

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A lot of fans and pundits seem to have a hard time grasping the simple fact that different players are better suited to different systems. That is why countless players do better for their clubs than their countries and vice versa. 

There is no doubt that Richarlison is fully deserving of the number nine shirt, given his record for Brazil in the lead-up to the World Cup.

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