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Neymar tears anterior cruciate ligament while playing for Brazil in World Cup qualifying game

Neymar reacts after tearing his left ACL and meniscus.

Brazilian soccer superstar Neymar is set to have surgery after tearing both his anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and meniscus in his left knee, his club Al-Hilal have confirmed.

The 31-year-old suffered the injury during Brazil’s 2-0 defeat against Uruguay on Tuesday.

After battling with Uruguay’s Nicolás de la Cruz for ball, Neymar collapsed to the ground clutching his knee, just before half-time. He received medical attention for several minutes before being stretchered off the field.

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“The medical tests Neymar underwent, confirmed the Anterior Cruciate Ligament and Meniscus tear injury in his knee, he will be going through surgery and then a treatment program that will be determined later,” the team announced on X, formerly known as Twitter. “Return Stronger @neymarjr 💙”

Neymar reacts after tearing his left ACL and meniscus.

The club did not say how long the Brazilian is expected to be sidelined for, but ACL injuries usually keep players in recovery for several months, meaning that his participation in the Copa América in June is under threat.

Neymar, made the move to the Saudi Arabian club in September, departing Paris Saint-Germain after spending six seasons in the French capital, becoming one of the highest-profile players to join the burgeoning Saudi Pro League. The €222 million (approximately $243.1M) transfer fee attached to his 2017 move to PSG saw him become the most expensive soccer player of all time.

“It’s a very sad time, the worst,” Neymar posted on X after the injury was confirmed. “I know I’m strong, but this time I’m going to need my family and friends even more.”

Neymar was carted off the pitch after picking up the serious injury.

Injuries have plagued the forward throughout his career. This marks the second surgery Neymar will undergo in 2023 – his final season in Paris was ended prematurely after an ankle injury in February.

“It’s not easy going through injury and surgery, imagine going through it all again following four months of recovery,” he added in his post.

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Neymar became Brazil’s all-time record goalscorer in September, passing Pelé’s record of 77 international goals after scoring twice against Bolivia.

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