Thursday 13 December 2018

Salah out as Neymar a concern for Brazil


Egypt's Mohamed Salah. Photo: Gabriel Bouys/AFP/Getty Images
Egypt's Mohamed Salah. Photo: Gabriel Bouys/AFP/Getty Images
Daniel McDonnell

Daniel McDonnell

Mo Salah's World Cup dream is over after just six days as Egypt were taken apart by hosts Russia last night.

And the fate of another tournament star hangs in the balance with concerns growing about Neymar's ability to contribute to Brazil's tilt due to fitness problems.

Salah was deemed fit enough to start in his country's 3-1 defeat to Russia after missing the opening loss to Uruguay. And the reverse means that Egypt are doomed unless Saudi Arabia somehow register a shock win against the Uruguayans today.

The Liverpool talisman struck a late penalty in St Petersburg and will get the chance to add to his tally against the Saudis but it will count for nothing.

Meanwhile, Neymar has given Brazil a fresh headache after limping out of training yesterday, sparking fears he could miss their clash with Costa Rica on Friday.

The Paris Saint-Germain forward winced in pain after kicking a football during a fairly tame training drill, three days after becoming the most fouled player at the World Cup in the last 20 years after he was targeted during the 1-1 draw with Switzerland.

Neymar left the Rostov Arena limping but told media that there was nothing to worry about, and his appearance in training appeared to allay any fears that he had suffered yet another heartbreaking injury at a World Cup following his 2014 anguish.

But those fears quickly returned when he pulled up soon after kicking the ball, and after briefly attempting to continue training, the 26-year-old was led away by the team's medical staff for further assessment.

The news is a huge concern for Brazil head coach Tite, given that Neymar has only just returned from a broken foot after suffering a fractured metatarsal while playing for PSG in the Champions League last February.

However, the Brazilian FA have said that the player is suffering from ankle pains and insisted that their main man will train today.

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