Ready, set, go!

Palmeiras yesterday kicked off the 2022 season: players returned to the training center and, after being subjected to a rapid COVID test, carried out physical exams in the morning and a training session in the afternoon.

Amidst the spread of the omicron variant and a surge in cases throughout the world, Palmeiras suffered its toll: Weverton, Patrick de Paula, Gustavo Scarpa, Breno Lopes and newcomer Rafael Navarros tested positive and returned immediately to their houses to quarantine.

The day also treated us to a press conference with football director Anderson Barros and Palmeiras president Leila Pereira. Both were unequivocal in saying that Palmeiras is looking for new players to increase the quality of the squad, but they aren’t going to incur the institution in financial problems. Barros even let a name of a possible player that is coming slip out: Jailson, defensive midfielder that began his career at Grêmio.

The future of Luiz Adriano and Lucas Lima remain unknown, but it is clear none will play for the Big Green this season. Neither will Victor Luis, lent to Ceará until the end of the year, which also marks the end of his contract with Palmeiras.

The focus of this first month is on preparing the team for the FIFA Club World Cup. The rise in cases of COVID will have Palmeiras extra cautious in following health and safety protocols to avoid an outbreak in the squad only a few days before traveling to Abu Dhabi. We expect all of our players and staff to be fully vaccinated to help avoiding a situation like this.

2022 will feature a crazy calendar, just like the previous season. Palmeiras’ first game is scheduled for 23 January and the team will play between 62 and 81 games before December, when everything needs to be finished before we can have the World Cup in Qatar. Let’s enjoy those last few days without games to prepare ourselves for another historical season for the Verdão!

Scoppia che la vittoria è nostra!

– – – ooo – – –
by Augusto Anteghini Oazi

*Here at Anything Palmeiras, we love football. We love Palmeiras. We are always keen to see Palmeiras play, and keen to write about it for you. But we’re against the return of football in a country that still hasn’t controlled the coronavirus pandemic. We express our deepest sympathy to the families whose loved ones have been taken by the disease.

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