Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Neymar a serious doubt to face Real after fracturing metatarsal




Neymar a serious doubt to face Real after fracturing metatarsal

Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar lies on the pitch during their French Ligue 1 match with Marseille at the Parc des Princes in Paris on Sunday. AFP
Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar lies on the pitch during their French Ligue 1 match with Marseille at the Parc des Princes in Paris on Sunday. AFP

Neymar a serious doubt to face Real after fracturing metatarsal

Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar suffered a sprained ankle and a fractured metatarsal when he was stretchered off in Sunday’s win over Marseille, the Ligue 1 leaders announced on Monday.

The Brazilian, who signed for PSG in a world-record move from Barcelona last year, is now a serious injury doubt for the Champions League last-16 second leg against Real Madrid at the Parc des Princes on March 6.

PSG trail in the tie after a 3-1 first-leg defeat in Spain, with their hopes of a maiden Champions League title taking a further body blow with the confirmation of Neymar’s injury, although they didn’t specify how long the 26-year-old would be out of action.

“Additional examinations performed today (ultrasound and CT) confirmed an external sprain of the right ankle, but also an associated fissure of the fifth metatarsal,” PSG said in a short statement.

The chances of Neymar returning to fitness in time to face the reigning European champions now appear extremely slim. He is all but certain to miss Wednesday’s French Cup quarterfinal against Marseille and the weekend’s Ligue 1 visit to Troyes, with the Real clash just three days later.

Metatarsal injuries usually take weeks, if not months to recover from.

Just last year, Neymar’s international teammate Gabriel Jesus was out of action for two months after breaking a metatarsal with Manchester City, and has struggled with further injuries since.

Former England stars David Beckham and Wayne Rooney spent six weeks on the sidelines with metatarsal injuries in the past, with both still arguably being rushed back too soon for the 2002 and 2006 World Cups respectively.

Stretchered off in anguish

Brazil fans will also be keeping a close eye on Neymar’s fitness, especially after he missed their 2014 World Cup thrashing by Germany with injury.

PSG, who lead the French top flight by a massive 14 points, also said that Brazilian centre-back Marquinhos had picked up a leg muscle problem.

Neymar was stretchered off in anguish towards the end of PSG’s 3-0 victory over their great rivals in the capital, having innocuously rolled his right ankle and flopped to the ground in pain.

With the game already as good as over, the stadium held its breath as he was treated and then carried away, with PSG forced to finish the match with 10 men having made all of their substitutions.

Neymar himself posted a picture on Instagram of his right leg with the ankle and foot heavily bandaged, before later appearing to delete the post. “08:10. Finished for today,” said the caption.

French newspaper Le Parisien had earlier reported that tests on Monday morning had ruled out a “fracture of a serious sprain”.

But the club later confirmed their fans’ worst fears, with the return game against Real just eight days away.

Despite the injury potentially benefiting Madrid, the Spanish side’s coach Zinedine Zidane claimed he hoped Neymar would recover in time to play.

“I’m not happy with the Neymar injury and I hope he can be back for the game. I will never want a rival player to be out injured,” Zidane said at a press conference in the Spanish capital earlier on Monday.

While Neymar was leaving the Parc des Princes on crutches on Sunday, PSG coach Unai Emery insisted he was “optimistic”.

“We will be optimistic. If I had to say today [whether or not he will face Real]I would rather say yes,” the Spaniard said.

But now his team’s hopes of keeping their European dream alive are hanging by a thread, despite the continued presence up front of Edinson Cavani and Kylian Mbappe.

PSG have never reached the Champions League final, and lost at the last-16 stage last season after a humiliating 6-1 second-leg thrashing by a Neymar-inspired Barcelona, having won the first game 4-0.

MOST VIEWED

  • Body of woman killed in Bangkok returns

    The Cambodian embassy in Thailand is working to repatriate the body of a casino dealer who was shot dead in Bangkok on Monday night. Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation spokesman Kuy Kuong told The Post on Wednesday that officials are preparing paperwork to

  • Chikungunya hits 15 provinces, says gov’t

    Ministry of Health spokeswoman Or Vandine said on Thursday that the chikungunya outbreak in the Kingdom has spread to 15 provinces. Some 1,700 people are now suspected to have the disease. Vandine urged people to prevent its further spread by eliminating shelters for the Aedes aegypti mosquitoes

  • Gov’t exempts visa A and B holders from Covid fees

    Airline passengers who are diplomats and officials of international organisations holding Type A and B visas for travel to Cambodia are exempted from paying Covid-19 testing fees, said the Ministry of Health in its latest adjustment of rules on Wednesday. Health Minister Mam Bun Heng

  • Bill covering dress code draws ire

    Ministry of Interior secretary of state Ouk Kim Lek responded on Tuesday to criticism concerning a draft law that would ban women from wearing overly revealing clothing, saying that input from all parties will be considered as the law moves through the promulgation process. Several

  • Passing the test: Is Cambodia’s education system failing its people?

    The Kingdom’s education system needs to grow its people but some flaws might stifle​ this growth Coming from the Khmer Rouge occupation, with the loss of many scholars and academicians and a collapsed government, the education system had to be reconstructed from scratch – one

  • What’s the deal with Cambodia and China’s FTA?

    Cambodia’s Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with China kicks off a series of FTAs in future but for now, critics wonder what else the parties could bring to the table apart from what it already has to date By the end of this year, Cambodia