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Rediff News  All News  » Sports » Cafu, Kaka relieved to be back with Brazil

Cafu, Kaka relieved to be back with Brazil

October 06, 2004 12:49 IST

Brazil captain Cafu and midfielder Kaka are relieved to be back with the world champions after being caught up in a club-versus-country row which caused them to miss last month's match against Bolivia.

The AC Milan pair was overlooked for the World Cup qualifier in Sao Paulo after their Italian Serie A club had refused to release them for a friendly international in Haiti in August.

AC Milan goalkeeper Dida and Bayern Munich duo Lucio and Ze Roberto suffered the same fate after failing to make the trip to Haiti for a game dubbed the 'Peace Match'.

"I hope it doesn't happen again on the part of Milan or the CBF (Brazilian Football Confederation)," said Cafu on Tuesday as he prepared for Saturday's World Cup qualifier in Venezuela and the home game with Colombia next Wednesday.


"The truth is that the players suffer most and we end up missing important matches."

Kaka said:

"Fortunately the problem has been overcome ... we're relieved this is over and we hope it doesn't happen again."

The game in Haiti was arranged to promote peace between the warring factions on the strife-torn Caribbean island, where Brazilian troops lead the United Nations peacekeeping force.

Although their clubs refused to release them, Brazil coach Carlos Alberto Parreira suggested the players could have made a bigger effort to get permission to take part.

The August 19 fixture in Haiti took place on a date allocated by world soccer's governing body FIFA for friendly internationals.

However, under new FIFA rules, clubs are only obliged to release players for friendlies on the same continent.

Other European-based players, including Ronaldo, Ronaldinho and Roberto Carlos, played in the 6-0 win, an experience Ronaldo described as better than winning the World Cup.

Pedro Fonseca
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