Neymar’s doctor Rodrigo Lasmar expressed optimism that the Paris Saint-Germain star will lead Brazil to a successful World Cup in Russia, but Thiago Silva sees his teammate’s absence from the team as an advantage to be exploited for a good reason.
Neymar, 26, has repeatedly encountered serious injuries since overcoming pains and trauma from his last World Cup match in 2014, when Brazil suffered a humiliating 7-1 loss to cup winners Germany.
Brazil’s team doctor, Lasmar, said in an interview that his patient will attain full fitness before the 2018 World Cup, adding that the famous footballer’s efforts to achieve 100% recovery are yielding significant results.
Neymar has ditched his crutches, local media reports confirm. His blossoming season with the Ligue 1 club was cut short when he fractured the fifth metatarsal in his right foot during a match against Marseille which ended 3-0 in favor of Emery Unai’s team.
Good news for Brazil – Neymar is back walking ahead of the World Cup! 🙌🇧🇷
— Goal (@goal) April 22, 2018
The former Barcelona forward said last week that he is set to play football again on May 17. Neymar hopes to train with the rest of his Brazil teammates on this day as the country prepares for their Russia 2018 opener against Switzerland in Rostov. The match takes place exactly one month later.
Silva, who captained the Brazil until the end of 2014 World Cup before losing his armband to football poster boy Neymar, however, said the team has been coping without their injured teammate.
“Any country, not just Brazil, will miss Neymar’s quality and influence at such a global competition,” the defender said.
Thiago, who also play alongside Neymar at PSG, explained further saying, “Though we need him in the squad, the truth is: not having him sometimes helps us consolidate the style we want.”
Tite took over as coach in 2016 and quickly infused verve in the team. Brazil, a five-time World Cup winner, has since returned to its old winning ways and were first to qualify for the global tournament.
While Neymar hopes to recover on time to make the trip to Russia even though his compatriots have shown they’re better off playing as a team than relying on “the Messiah”.
Brazil has played six matches without the world’s most expensive player and won four, including a March friendly against Germany in Berlin.
The South Americans are heading to Russia with a more balanced team and whether Neymar is included or not won’t be a problem. There are quality players in every position. Their capabilities showed in the qualifying rounds when they dominated South America with enough points that would have still kept them on top even without records of the six games played under Dunga.
Image shows the Brazil team with Neymar
Brazil appears more dangerous without Neymar, pundits say, but Pele insists, “Skill wise, he is already the best player in the world…This is his time to shine.”
Brazil team medic Lasmar told Globo Esporte, “Neymar is working hard…We expect him to be well prepared so he can make an excellent preparation for the World Cup…He is recovering in the best possible way, as part of the established programme for rehabilitation.”
The Selecao doctor explained that Neymar’s physical condition needs improvement as a player coming back from injury.
“Players returning from an injury must undergo an individual assessment in order to design the best strategy for them,” Lasmar added.
Neymar is set to undergo his last medical tests on 17 May.
Meanwhile, Serginho, a former Selecao who won the Copa America and made it the finals of 1999 Confederations Cup with Brazil in says he would be excited to see Neymar in Russia.
“I hope Neymar can achieve full recovery,” the 46-year-old told Hublot. “He had a rather bad injury but I hope he comes back at 100 percent…He’s among the best in the world alongside Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.
“Neymar will be one of the great names at this World Cup,” Serginho added before showering praise on the team.
“I think, after 2014, Brazil have completely changed their mentality….Today, they are a much stronger side thanks to Tite. They have rediscovered the joy and creativity to play football, which was exactly what they missed in 2014.”