Brazil superstar Neymar says he is going through ‘one of the most difficult moments of his career’ as an ankle injury threatens his World Cup dream.
Neymar has been ruled out of Brazil’s next two World Cup games after sustaining ligament damage in his right ankle and it remains to be seen whether he will be fit for the knockout stages.
The Paris Saint-Germain forward was replaced in the 80th minute of Thursday’s 2-0 win over Serbia after a heavy tackle from Nikola Milenkovic.
Neymar looked emotional as he sat on the bench and pictures showed his right ankle severely swollen.
Almost 24 hours after the injury, Neymar posted an emotional message on Instagram, vowing to do everything he can to return and help Brazil’s World Cup bid.
He wrote on Instagram: ‘The pride and love I feel wearing the shirt is inexplicable. If God gave me the opportunity to choose a country to be born in, it would be Brazil.
‘Nothing in my life was given or easy, I always had to chase after my dreams and my goals. Never wishing someone harm but helping those in need.
‘Today has become one of the most difficult moments of my career… and again in a World Cup.
‘I have an injury yes, it’s annoying, it’s going to hurt but I’m sure I’ll have a chance to come back. I’ll do my best to help my country and my team-mates.’
Brazil’s team doctor has also confirmed that right-back Danilo will also miss the next two games with ankle damage.
‘Neymar and Danilo went through a MRI on Friday afternoon and we found ligament damage in the ankle of both of them,’ said Brazil team doctor Rodrigo Lasmar.
‘It is important to be calm and evaluate day by day. The idea is to recover them for the rest of the competition.’
Brazil head coach Tite, meanwhile, said he was ‘confident’ Neymar would feature at the World Cup.
Former Barcelona forward Neymar was fouled nine times against Serbia, drawing four more free-kicks than any other player at this year’s World Cup.
Five-time winners Brazil face Switzerland on Monday and Cameroon next Friday as they look to advance to the World Cup knockout stages from Group H.
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