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Falcao hopeful for World Cup after surgery

ESPN staff
January 28, 2014 « Hazard: I want to be best in the world | Chartbeat test »
Colombia striker Radamel Falcao has refused to give up hope on appearing at the World Cup

Radamel Falcao insists he sees a glimmer of hope that he will play for Colombia at the World Cup in Brazil.

"I am convinced that everything is going to be OK and I will be able to give the best I have [at the World Cup]," Falcao said during a media conference at Trindade de Oporto hospital where he underwent surgery on Saturday for a torn ACL in his left knee.

"When they told me at first that I had a serious injury and there was only a small chance of participating [in Brazil], I didn't care whether it was 10, 20 or 50 percent. I was counting on that chance," he said. "This is my hope and with this dream I will work every day. A lot has to do with my emotional state. This is something that I can manage each day."

Falcao spoke to reporters during the media conference along with his doctor, Jose Carlos Noronha and the head doctor of the Colombia Federation, Carlos Ulloa. The 27-year-old moved on crutches, was cheerful and smiled as he spoke to reporters. He thanked his fans for all their support since he was carried off the pitch on a stretcher on Wednesday night following a heavy challenge by Soner Ertek in the 40th minute of Monaco's 3-0 Coupe de France win at Monts d'Or Azergues.

"Without a doubt, I think that time is not on our side, but I think the possibility exists and that is where I find hope," he said. "I try not to think about whether [recovery] will be two, three four months, but rather to focus on the day to day."

He said he would not try to speed up the process.

"I can't skip any steps," Falcao added. "The main thing is that I can respect the recovery steps for a good rehab. At no time will I pressure myself or the capacity of my knee to recover." Prior to the press conference, Falcao said he had gone with doctors to a hyperbaric chamber to speed his recovery.

The hyperbaric chamber is key for the healing of the scar and the injury, Noronha said, adding that Falcao will have MRIs every 30 days to monitor his progress.

Officials said Falcao could leave the hospital as early as Tuesday and would move to a hotel with his wife, Lorelei Taron. He is scheduled to remain for three weeks in Oporto before returning to Monte Carlo to continue his rehab. He said he has no plans to return to Colombia at this time.

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