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Andre Santos - Good enough for Brazil but not for Arsenal

Arsenal flop Andre Santos has been named in the latest Brazil squad.

For fans of Arsenal who watched him 'defend', bringing a mood of fear to the Emirates, the thought of Andre Santos playing for Brazil will seem like a bad joke.

But the situation is a reality, with Santos included in the 18-man squad announced yesterday to face Chile in a friendly on April 24.

As the date is not an official date on the FIFA calendar, there are no European based players in the squad, which includes Ronaldinho and Neymar.

Santos is of course on loan in Brazil with Gremio, and has been part of their recent Copa Libertadores side.

He scored early into his time in his homeland, and has become a regular at the club, although faces renewed competition from former Liverpool star Fabio Aurelio who has now recovered from a cruciate knee injury.

For anybody thinking the only reason Santos is in this Brazil squad due to the fact European-based players are ineligible, think again.

He was also named in the recent friendly squad to play Bolivia, which had no such restrictions.

After that call-up, he said: "I thank the club, coaches and directors for giving me all their support. I needed a run of games to get back to my ideal level and consequently show that I'm good enough to return to the national selection."

Clearly Santos was not performing to the best of his ability at Arsenal, but even if he were, based on what we have seen of him, it is doubtful his top level will even be enough to give him another chance at the Emirates.

Brazil are out of form at present, having even lost to England recently, and certainly don't inspire the fear of past great sides.

Manager Luiz Scolari recently came back to try to turn around their fortunes, but bringing Santos into the squad hardly inspires confidence he will do that.

But this is the man who won the World Cup with Roque Junior and Kleberson, so who knows, maybe he knows something we all do not.

image: © Ronnie Macdonald

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