Submitted on Tue, 01/18/2011 - 19:03

Rafael da Silva secured his first ever Brazil cap in the friendly against USA. New Brazil boss Mano Menezes, who took over from Dunga after the Selecao's poor outing in South Africa, named Da Silva in his 23-man squad against the USA in New Jersey.

The football betting markets don't expect him to start, but he may come on as a sub. In comments to his club's website, Da Silva said: "I'm so happy to have been called up to the national team and very proud."

It's my first call and I hope there will be more to come in the future.

The coach called me before he announced the squad and asked me how I felt and how my training was going. I was so happy when he told me I was going to be in the squad."

However, with competition for places in the Selecao is furious, and Rafael Da Silva's place in the squad is certainly not a guarantee. The right-back will face stiff competition from Inter Milan's Maicon, who preformed credibly for Brazil in the World Cup.

"Maicon plays in my position and he is a great player who I can learn a lot from," Rafael said. "I am so lucky to play for the best team in the world, Manchester United. Now to play for my country will be a dream come true."

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