Neymar is one of 13 players from Brazil’s 2018 World Cup team who will travel to the United States next month for friendly matches against the U.S. national team and El Salvador.
The Paris Saint-Germain forward is joined by several other Brazil regulars on the squad coach Tite named on Friday, many of them also representing the world’s top club teams. The 24-man roster also includes Barcelona midfielder Philippe Coutinho and English-based attackers Roberto Firmino of Liverpool and Willian, who plays for Chelsea.
Brazil will meet the USMNT Sept. 7 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, just across the Hudson River from New York City. The five-time world champions then face the Salvadorans four days later in Washington, D.C.
The match is the first of six the U.S. will play before the end of 2018. At least four of those will be against teams ranked inside FIFA’s Top 25. The U.S. will play 16th-ranked Mexico days after taking on Brazil. They’ll also take on No. 14 Colombia in October, before closing out the year with friendlies against England (6th) and Italy (21st).
The U.S. roster will be announced on Sept. 2, the day players report to camp. It is expected to be similar in makeup to the young squad that held eventual World Cup champ France to a 1-1 draw in Lyon on the eve of the tournament in Russia. Tim Weah, Neymar’s teammate at PSG, started that match and should also be among the forwards selected by interim coach Dave Sarachan. The 18-year-old Weah scored his first Ligue 1 goal last weekend after replacing Neymar late in the 3-0 rout of Caen.
U.S. star Christian Pulisic, who sat out the game versus Les Bleus and another in June against Ireland, should also be involved with the U.S. for just the second time since the Americans failed to qualify for Russia last October.
Whoever Sarachan picks, Brazil will pose a formidable challenge. The Americans are 1-17 against the Selecao all-time, including a 2-0 loss in East Rutherford in 2010 in Neymar’s debut with Brazil.