Ronaldo has been dropped from Brazil’s squad for next month’s World Cup qualifiers and the Confederations Cup.

“Ronaldo claimed personal problems that prevent him from dedicating himself to the Brazilian team at the moment,” Brazil coach Carlos Alberto Parreira said.

Grafite will take the striker’s place for the qualifiers against Paraguay on Sunday and at Argentina on June 8. Julio Cesar will replace him at the Confederations Cup, an eight-nation tournament to be held in Germany from June 15-29.

The Real Madrid forward said he wanted time off because it would be his only break from playing before the 2006 World Cup.

The decision to drop Ronaldo from the two qualifiers came as a surprise.

“I was prepared to play both games,” he told the Globo TV Network.

“I was ready and motivated, but the Brazilian Soccer Confederation has decided and I have to respect that decision. Now I just want to rest, get away from it all and get ready for next year.”