FIFA World Cup: Dream of being World Cup champ not over, says Neymar
Neymar battled back tears as he urged his Brazil teammates to win the World Cup without him after suffering a fractured vertebrae in his team's quarter-final win over Colombia
Teresopolis: Neymar battled back tears as he urged his Brazil teammates to win the World Cup without him after suffering a fractured vertebrae in the win over Colombia.
Brazil's Neymar gives a victory sign as he lies inside a medical helicopter at Teresopolis' Granja Comary training center. Pic/AP/PTI
"They took away my dream of playing in a World Cup final, but the dream of being a world champion is not over," the emotional superstar said in comments released by the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) as he left the team camp on Saturday.
Meanwhile, FIFA announced it would consider action against Colombian defender Juan Zuniga who kneed the Brazilian in the back.
"Life moves on. I am sure my teammates will do everything possible so that we can achieve our dream of being champions," Neymar said in a video released by the federation. "It was also my dream to play in a World Cup final. It will not be this time, but I am sure we will overcome this and we will all be able to celebrate being champions."
The Brazil squad applauded the 22-year-old Barcelona striker in an emotional farewell at their Teresopolis camp before he was taken to Rio de Janeiro by helicopter.
Brazilian team doctor Jose Luiz Runco said that the fracture will need around six weeks — 40 to 45 days — to heal, and that the player will rest at home with his family in Guaruja, near Sao Paulo.
In the meantime, Brazil must hope that the injury does not have a negative impact on squad morale.
'Brazil team shocked'
"Everyone in the squad was shocked, upset by what happened," Runco said of the mood in the dressing room. "One said to me: 'It seems like we have lost the game'".
Neymar departed Brazil's base in Terespolis on Saturday afternoon, waving to the cameras after he was loaded on a stretcher onto a helicopter on a pitch at the Granja Comary training ground.
'Silva suspension unfair'
Meanwhile, Brazil called on FIFA to scrap the suspension which has ruled captain Thiago Silva out of the host nation's clash with Germany.
The card against Silva was "unjustly shown" and the defender should therefore be allowed to face the Germans in Belo Horizonte, the CBF said in a statement.