Brazil Expects Neymar to Return from Injury During World Cup amid '24-Hour' Rehab

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVNovember 27, 2022

Brazil's Neymar controls the ball during the World Cup group G soccer match between Brazil and Serbia, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2022. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)
AP Photo/Andre Penner

Brazil manager Tite said both Neymar and Danilo will return from injuries suffered in the opening World Cup match against Serbia.

"I believe that Neymar and Danilo will play the World Cup," Tite told reporters, per Tom Hamilton of ESPN. "I believe in that. Medically, clinically, they can talk more about the stages of the treatment. [But] I have no place to talk. I trust that we will be able to use both of them."

Neymar suffered an ankle injury in Thursday's 2-0 victory, coming off in the 80th minute. He has been ruled out for the upcoming match against Switzerland on Monday and will reportedly miss the final group-stage match against Cameroon, per Hamilton.

The forward is undergoing 24-hour physiotherapy to help heal the injury.

There is a chance Neymar can return in time for the knockout stages, but Brazil will have to make a run without arguably its most important player.

The 30-year-old carried the squad through qualifying, scoring eight goals with eight assists in 10 matches as Brazil finished on top of the CONMEBOL table. No one else was responsible for more than six goals during qualifying.

The Paris Saint-Germain star has showcased his form during the Ligue 1 season with 11 goals and nine assists for the first-place club.

Brazil has no shortage of attacking options, with VinΓ­cius JΓΊnior, Richarlison, Raphinha, Gabriel Jesus and more proven players on the roster. These forwards could provide enough goals to help advance through the group stage.

However, the team likely needs Neymar back on the pitch to reach its goal of a World Cup title.