On the first anniversary of Brazil's epic World Cup humiliation of a 7-1 defeat to Germany, coach Dunga says there'll be no easy way back to the top for the once all-conquering Brazilian side. (Coach Scolari booted out after World Cup humiliation)
"We all have to improve," he said late Monday in comments on the Globo Esporte sports news site.
"We need the humility to know that we have to work to recover that dominance of world football, but we also have to admit that it's not that easy."
Dunga was speaking after huddling with former national team trainers for a post-mortem on Brazil's most recent fiasco -- a shock elimination from the Copa America last month on losing to minnow Paraguay.
But the real hurt for the most successful footballing nation on the planet dates back to July 8, 2014 and Brazil's collapse in the semi-final of a World Cup it was not only hosting but had been widely touted to win.
Instead, Germany went on to claim the crown.
Dunga said last year's humiliation is on a par with Brazil's 1950 World Cup final defeat to lowly Uruguay in Rio's iconic Maracana stadium, an event so traumatizing for the all-confident Brazilians that it is still talked about, going down in history with its own name -- "the Maracanazo."
The Germany defeat "is a date that will leave a mark, just like 1950, and just like the five times that Brazil was world champion," he said.
Even if Brazil's yellow-shirted players were once synonymous with talent and a winning way, Dunga says fans must get used to a less glamorous reality.
"We have to see the positive side. We can't always win," he said. "We have to try to go forward in every way we can."
Just how to do that is something that Dunga and a brain trust of former football luminaries are trying to work out.
"We have to rediscover the identity of our football, starting with bottom club divisions, which are really responsible for forming players," the Brazilian Football Confederation said in a statement.