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Neymar makes teary exit from World Cup

ESPN staff
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Punishment to come for Neymar incident?

Neymar has made a teary exit from the World Cup but believes his Brazil team-mates can win the tournament without him.

The forward's tournament was declared over after he suffered a broken vertebra following a collision with Juan Camilo Zuniga in Brazil's quarter-final victory against Colombia on Friday.

He recorded a video which was later released on the Brazilian Football Confederation's website, in which he spoke about his injury for the first time.

"My World Cup has not ended, it has been interrupted by a play but the tournament goes on and I told my team-mates to do everything in order to help me achieve my dream to be world champion," Neymar said.

Neymar was airlifted back to his home in a medical helicopter © Getty Images
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"My dream was to play at a World Cup final but I'm certain my team-mates will be champions. I will be there with them, and all Brazilians will soon be celebrating all of that."

Brazil team doctor Jose Luiz Runco revealed Neymar cried "profusely" when he told the attacker, who scored four goals during the tournament, that his World Cup was over.

"I didn't even give the kid the chance to ask me. I broke the news and it was hard to see him crying profusely when told he was out of the competition," Runco said.

"He only calmed down when I reasoned with him that as 22-year old footballer his professional life still has a lot to offer."

"He should be in action in 40 to 45 days. Nothing prevents him from watching the games if he feels comfortable. In the absence of a better word, this has been a good injury because it won't leave any further problems for him despite the violence with which he was hit on the back by the opposition players."

Runco revealed it was Neymar's decision to leave the Brazil camp on Saturday and head to his house in the Sao Paulo state seaside town of Guaruja. He was transported home on a stretcher via a medical helicopter.

"The player thought it would be better for him to recover near his family and there was no issue with us," Runco said. "The only thing we did was to bring him to spend Friday night with us at the team camp so we could keep an eye on him."

FIFA, meanwhile, announced they will investigate the incident which ended Neymar's World Cup prematurely.

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