Brazil captain in penalty shootout: Don't pick me coach!

Alex Baker
June 29, 2014
Brazil's Thiago Silva wins a challenge with Chile's Mauricio Pinilla during the World Cup round of 16 soccer match between Brazil and Chile at the Mineirao Stadium in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Saturday, June 28, 2014
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Brazil's Thiago Silva wins a challenge with Chile's Mauricio Pinilla during the World Cup round of 16 soccer match between Brazil and Chile at the Mineirao Stadium in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Saturday, June 28, 2014. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

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The World Cup offers a chance for players to step up and represent their nation. Boys become men and men become heroes. And while there is intense pressure, most players relish the opportunity to win glory for their nation.

That is unless you are Brazil captain, Thiago Silva.

During Saturday's penalty shootout with Chile, the Brazilian defender was apparently so lacking in confidence he asked coach Luiz Felipe Scolari if he could be selected last to take his penalty; behind even goalkeeper Julio Cesar.

[Related: Brazil tries to regroup for World Cup quarters ]

"Hitting a penalty is a big responsibility at home and I asked God not to be selected," said Silva. "I missed two of my last three and Scolari asked me to be the sixth. I said no, I asked to be last on the list, behind Julio Cesar."

In the end it didn't matter, as the heroic Cesar blocked penalty kicks from Alexis Sanchez and Mauricio Pinilla. Unlucky Gonzalo Jara's penalty struck the woodwork and Brazil passed through to the next round by the skin of their teeth, without the need for any extra heroism on the part of their captain.

Brazil will face Colombia in the quarter-finals on Friday. For the sake of Thiago Silva's nerves, let's hope it doesn't go to penalties!