Saturday, July 5, 2014 3:21 am
Brazil star Neymar has been ruled out of the World Cup after scans showed he suffered a fractured vertebra during Brazil’s 2-1 win over Colombia in a quarterfinal match.
The 22 year old forward, whose cornerkick led to the opening goal, had been stretchered off in the 88th minute after being hit in the lower back by the knee of Colombia’s Juan Zuniga.
Brazil coach Luiz Felipe Scolari had initially ruled the Barcelona forward out of Tuesday’s semi-final against Germany but the team doctor confirmed his and Brazil’s worst fears in a statement.
”Neymar had a scan, which confirmed he had fractured his third vertebra,” said team doctor Rodrigo Lasmar, adding that “In terms of the recovery process, it’s a fracture that heals quickly, but unfortunately he’ll be in no condition to play next week.”
Lasmar stated further that the injury does not require surgery but it would need to be immobilised with a belt which would help restore mobility in the vertebra after ‘a few weeks’ for Neymar.
Zuniga meanwhile has stated the challenge was not malicious, saying ”I never intended to hurt the player. When I am on the pitch, I do everything to defend my country.”
Neymar’s teammate Hulk expressed sadness after confirmation of the injury, stating ”It’s all very frustrating. Neymar really looks after himself. He was so excited about the World Cup and he’d helped us so much.”
The Zenit St. Petersburg player stated further that ”We have to get over this and run even harder for him. We’re going to try and be the champions anyway and dedicate the title to him.”
Brazil will also be without suspended captain Thiago Silva in the mouth-watering semi-final against Germany next Tuesday after the talismatic defender received a second yellow card during the win over Colombia.