Julio Cesar looking ahead

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Football News

Brazil goalkeeper Julio Cesar believes his team is ready for the next chapter of the World Cup after taking a point from their game against Portugal and finishing Group G unbeaten.

After wins against North Korea and the Ivory Coast, the Canarinha were held to a goalless draw by Carlos Queiroz's side, a result that assured Brazil finished top of the pool - two points clear of the Portuguese.

Brazil will now face Chile and Julio Cesar believes it will be a difficult test as he said: "Now a new and more complicated stage in the competition begins and I am certain that Brazil will be ready."

He added: "We have done what we expected to do so far and now we have to focus one game at a time and continue to improve game by game."

Following Friday night's game, he added: "It was a difficult group. Portugal defended well and created some chances for themselves.

"We wanted to finish the group with a win but it was not to be. Nevertheless we can draw positives from our performance against Portugal.

"We dominated possession and we always surged forward hoping to score goals."

Julio Cesar has reason to be upbeat as his side will also welcome back midfield pair Kaka and Elano for Monday's last-16 encounter in Johannesburg.

Kaka served a one-match ban against Portugal while Elano was ruled out through injury.

"They are both crucial players for us and it will be good to have them back in the team for our next game," said the Inter Milan player.

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

Hartlepool United
League One

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