( dpa ) - Luiz Felipe Scolari, former Brazilian national coach and currently Portugal manager, sought to put a brake on the fever that Milan's young Brazilian striker Alexandre Pato, 18, is spurring in his own country.
Following Pato's goal in Brazil's 1-0 victory over Sweden in a friendly last week - in the teenager's senior national team debut - the South American giant was hopeful that it might have found another football great.
"Pato is a great quality player, but I believe the media should step on the ball a little. You do not turn into Pele overnight. Pele made his name over time, and not with a goal in one or two matches. Alexandre is a great player, as everyone says, but he has to keep his feet on the ground and a balanced head," Scolari said.
In comments that the Brazilian sports daily Lance published Monday, the man who led Brazil to success in the 2002 World Cup in South Korea and Japan further predicted that Manchester United's Portuguese striker Cristiano Ronaldo, 23, will return to his best form soon.
"He is a boy who has a great potential, not just as a sportsman but also as a human being. I think he will reach full maturity in one or two years. He probably will return to a spot among the top three in the world," Scolari said of the Portuguese player.The coach further expressed hope for the recovery of Brazilian star Ronaldo, who is currently recovering from serious knee surgery similar to that which kept him off the pitch for almost two years in 2000-2001.
"I have spoken with him several times with a message of encouragement. He told me it will be a bit harder to get over this trauma than it was in his last injury. But I think he will recover, although it will take him more effort than he made in 2002," Scolari said.
The coach also said Portugal stands a chance to claim the title at Euro 2008 in Austria and Switzerland.
"We have are absolutely in a position to conquer the title. When all players are at our disposal, on May 18, we will think about the details," Scolari said.