TERESOPOLIS, Brazil (AP) — Brazil left back Dani Alves has turned on former England captain Alan Shearer for criticizing striker Fred, saying his comments as reported by Brazilian media are "idiotic".
Shearer reportedly told Brazilian media that Fred is not the right striker for Brazil and that the hosts seem to be playing with a man down when Fred is on the field.
"These are some of the most idiotic comments that we can hear," Alves said. "Especially coming from someone who played, who knows football and understands the difficulties of competing, of scoring goals or making plays."
Shearer reportedly told the UOL website that "Fred is holding Brazil back" and "can't be the striker of Brazil's national team" in a World Cup.
"He doesn't move, he doesn't help the team," Shearer was quoted as saying. "It looks like Brazil is playing with 10 men all the time."
Fred has been struggling with Brazil and is yet to score after the team's two matches at the World Cup.
"Something like this is a shame for football because it's disrespectful to other professional players," Alves said. "These people don't add anything to football, on the contrary, they only degrade other players."
Shearer captained England in the 1998 World Cup in France, scoring two goals.
"Former players know how hard it is to play football," Alves said. "It's a shame to hear this from former players. They are putting down fellow players. It's not ethical."
Alves' Brazil faces Cameroon on Monday in Brasilia in its final Group A match. The hosts need at least a draw to advance to the round of 16.
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