RIO DE JANEIRO, July 5 (Xinhua) -- Legendary striker Romario has lambasted Brazil's choice of over-age players for the Olympic Games.
Brazil's national coach Mano Menezes announced a 22-man squad for London on Thursday with Marcelo (Real Madrid), Thiago Silva (AC Milan) and Hulk (Porto) named as the three over-23-year-old players permitted by the International Olympic Committee. The team will be trimmed to 18 people before the London Games.
"It is rubbish, nothing against the over 23s that were selected but this called for players who are respected," Romario told local media.
"I'm not the coach but I disagree with the selection. I would take three defenders over the age of 23."
Romario, who was part of Brazil's 1994 World Cup-winning team, said he would have chosen Silva alongside Chelsea's David Luiz and Barcelona's Daniel Alves.
The former Barcelona striker, now a federal deputy for the Brazilian socialist party, reserved particularly harsh criticism for Hulk.
"Hulk is a good player and has a big future but he is a player for the World Cup (in 2014), not the Olympics. We have so many players over the age of 23. We should have taken a player who commands more respect."
Menezes said Hulk, who has been linked with a summer move to Chelsea, was selected for his good performances during Brazil's four international friendlies in May and June.
As expected, the squad includes Brazil-based stars Neymar, Paulo Henrique Ganso, Oscar, Lucas and Leandro Damiao.
The Olympic tournament is the only major soccer competition Brazil is yet to win.
Goalkeepers: Rafael Cabral (Santos), Neto (Fiorentina)
Defenders: Marcelo (Real Madrid), Rafael (Manchester United), Danilo
(Porto), Alex Sandro (Porto), Thiago Silva (AC Milan), Juan (Inter
Milan), Bruno Uvini (Sao Paulo)
Midfielders: Romulo (Vasco da Gama), Ganso (Santos), Oscar
(Internacional), Sandro (Tottenham Hotspur), Lucas (Sao Paulo)
Forwards: Neymar (Santos), Alexandre Pato (AC Milan), Leandro Damiao
(Internacional), Hulk (Porto).
Replacements: Marquinhos (Corinthians), Giuliano (Dniepr), Cassemiro
(Sao Paulo), Gabriel (AC Milan)