Frankfurt (heinnews) – Brazilian coach Kleiton Lima said his superstar forward Marta is just a “cold-blooded player” who isn’t affected by the stress and pressure of being THE superstar of the 2011 Women’s World Cup.
Marta has scored two goals for Brazil as the South American powerhouses passed through Group D without dropping a point with three victories while scoring a tournament-best seven goals (even with Germany and France) and being the only team not to concede a goal thus far.
Despite having a number of superstars on the Selecao, all the talk in Germany – other than the lackluster performance by hosts Germany – is about Marta.
The 25-year-old Western New York Flash striker scored two goals and set up a third in Brazil’s 3-0 win over Norway in the group stage. But she also set up two more goals – one of them drawing a penalty – against Equatorial Guinea.
Guinea coach Marcello Frigerio, himself a Brazilian, was clear in speaking of the greatness of the five-time reigning FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year, who has scored 78 goals in 72 caps.
“Marta is the best player in the world,” Frigerio said after his team’s 3-0 loss to Brazil.
“Only a man can cover her for the entire game. She was marked almost constantly but she almost scored twice and also set up goals. A player like Marta will always be an outstanding player in any game because such a player can make a difference and make a decision.”
Marta is not only making a difference on the pitch but also off of it as the lively, vibrant face of the Dois Riachos native can be seen in media throughout the world. And she is hoping to finally win the big one after losing in the finals of three tournaments – the 2004 and 2008 Olympics (2-1 to the United States in Athens 2004, 1-0 against the U.S. in Beijing 2008) and the 2007 World Cup final (2-0 against Germany).
But her coach Kleiton Lima believes she is oblivious to the stress and pressure surrounding her.
“Marta is prepared to play under pressure in a full stadium, in an empty stadium. It doesn’t matter. She’s a cold-blooded player. She doesn’t feel the pressure that’s on her. She’s used to that,” said the Brazil boss.
“She’s been in three finals and lost all three. Marta has learned to cope with pressure and how to cope with difficult moments and how to be strong nevertheless. “
Lima said there’s no one better than his creative scoring machine, adding: “She’s simply the best player in the world.”
The focus for Marta is always on the team’s success.
“She’s always focused on ensuring that the Brazilian team win this tournament, that we become world champions. She wants to bring out the best in the team,” said the coach.
One of the keys to Marta’s dominance is her flexibility to play anywhere on the pitch and find ways to beat her opponents.
“Sometimes her style of play is more extraverted Sometimes she focuses more on the centre. It depends on the situation. She does whatever is necessary for the team,” said Lima.
And the coach knows the Selecao’s future is bright as long as Marta is around.
“If she keeps this up I believe Brazil will continue to grow.”