Seventeen-year-old rising star Endrick, hailed as one of Brazilian football’s great hopes, got his first call-up for national team duty Monday as coach Fernando Diniz seeks to replace injured star Neymar.
Endrick, who is set to join Real Madrid when he turns 18 in July 2024, could make his senior international debut in Brazil’s World Cup qualifiers against Colombia and Argentina this month, making him the youngest player to receive a call-up for the Selecao since Ronaldo in 1994.
“He’s a player with the potential to be a great talent,” Diniz told a news conference, announcing his squad.
“This call-up isn’t pressure. It’s a reward, and also a look at the future of what the kid can be.”
Endrick, reportedly bought by Real Madrid for a €72-million transfer fee, is fresh off scoring a clutch brace as his current club, Palmeiras, came back from three goals down to beat league leaders Botafogo 4-3 on Wednesday.
Five-time World Cup winners Brazil will face Colombia away on 16 November in Barranquilla and arch-rivals Argentina on 21 November at Rio de Janeiro’s iconic Maracana stadium.
Diniz, who won the Copa Libertadores on Saturday in his second job as coach of Rio club Fluminense, largely overhauled Brazil’s attack with Neymar sidelined by a knee injury.
Also in line for their senior debuts are Brighton forward Joao Pedro, 22, Atletico Mineiro’s Paulinho, 23, and Porto’s Pepe, 26.
In a surprise move, Diniz left out Tottenham striker Richarlison, a starter at the 2022 World Cup.
Besides 31-year-old Neymar – sidelined for several months by a knee injury sustained on October 17 in Brazil’s 2-0 loss to Uruguay at their last 2026 World Cup qualifier – Brazil will also be missing their captain, Manchester United midfielder Casemiro, ruled out for several weeks with a hamstring injury.
GOALKEEPERS: Alisson (Liverpool, ENG), Ederson (Manchester City, ENG), Lucas Perri (Botafogo)
DEFENDERS: Emerson Royal (Tottenham, ENG), Carlos Augusto (Inter Milan, ITA), Renan Lodi (Marseille, FRA), Bremer (Juventus, ITA), Gabriel Magalhaes (Arsenal, ENG), Marquinhos (Paris Saint-Germain, FRA), Nino (Fluminense)
MIDFIELDERS: Andre (Fluminense), Bruno Guimaraes (Newcastle, ENG), Douglas Luiz (Aston Villa, ENG), Joelinton (Newcastle, ENG), Raphael Veiga (Palmeiras), Rodrygo (Real Madrid, ESP)
FORWARDS: Endrick (Palmeiras), Gabriel Jesus (Arsenal, ENG), Gabriel Martinelli (Arsenal, ENG), Joao Pedro (Brighton, ENG), Paulinho (Atletico Mineiro), Pepe (Porto, POR), Raphinha (Barcelona, ESP), Vinicius Jr (Real Madrid, ESP)