Brazil sack Menezes

Brazil fired Mano Menezes on Friday, little more than 18 months before the country hosts the 2014 World Cup and just as the coach seemed close to finding his ideal team after two years of experimenting.

The five-times world champions have won six of their last eight games, scoring 26 goals in the process, and the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) said the surprise decision had little to do with results.

"I don't think it was for negative results, if that was the case he could have been fired last year," national teams director Andres Sanchez said. "It was that the president (Jose Maria Marin) wants to change the way things are done."

Menezes made a brief statement on Twitter thanking the players and staff and wishing the squad the best of luck. "I wish every success to the Brazilian national side in fulfilling the fans' dream of winning the World Cup for a sixth time in 2014," he said.

A new coach will be chosen in early January, Sanchez added, with Luiz Felipe Scolari, who led Brazil to their fifth world title in 2002, among the favourites to take over.

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