Neymar left the field with a swollen ankle that needed treatment as Brazil beat Serbia 2-0 to begin their 2022 World Cup campaign on Thursday.
Neymar fouled nine times by Serbia and pictured with swollen ankle at full-time yet Tite is hopeful his tournament isn’t over.
Neymar watched the final 10 minutes of Brazil’s win from the sidelines as they made light work of Serbia, but did so hiding his face in his shirt as medical staff treated an ankle which he appeared to roll under a challenge earlier on in the game.
Speaking after the game, Brazil’s team doctor confirmed that Neymar had sprained his ankle and that they need 24 to 48 hours to assess the extent of the damage.
Manager Tite insisted that the issue wasn’t one that would end his tournament, though, saying: “You can be sure: Neymar will play in the World Cup. You can be absolutely sure of this, Neymar will play in the World Cup!”
THE BIGGER PICTURE:
An injury scare for Neymar is nightmarish in what could well be his final World Cup tournament. His 2014 World Cup in his home country was ruined by a back fracture and Brazil also underwhelmed in 2018. But with the Selecao coming into this tournament as one of the favourites, many tipped Neymar to finally steal the show on the world stage with his mesmeric talent.
WHAT NEXT FOR NEYMAR?
Brazil are next in action on Monday when they play Switzerland in Group G, although it remains to be seen whether or not the 30-year-old Paris Saint-Germain forward will have recovered in time.