Win or lose in the final, Rafael won’t be resting any time soon. He’s been included in Brazil’s senior squad to play Sweden next Wednesday in Stockholm. Then he’ll return to Manchester to prepare for the Reds’ 2012/13 Premier League campaign, which kicks off against Everton at Goodison Park on Monday 20 August .
“There are only a few days between the final and the first game of the season but this is normal for football players,” he said. “You often have to switch between competitions. I enjoy my life more like that. I like to play football.”