Tuesday 20 March, 2018

Neymar surgery positive news, says Brazil's fitness trainer

Brazil forward Neymar.

Brazil forward Neymar.

Neymar's surgery on a broken foot will be good news for Brazil's World Cup campaign, according to the national team's fitness trainer.

Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) confirmed on Wednesday the world's most expensive player would go under the knife after fracturing the fifth metatarsal in his right foot during the 3-0 weekend win over Marseille in Ligue 1.

The surgery could keep the 26-year-old forward on the sidelines for three months, meaning the prospects of him being at peak fitness by the time Brazil play their first match at Russia 2018 are in doubt.

But Fabio Mahseredjian, a member of Tite's Selecao backroom staff, believes Neymar's prospects of playing a full part against Switzerland at the Rostov Arena on June 17 are good.

"I'm sure he'll play in the first match, first because he's an athlete who takes care of himself, and he has a physiotherapist and a physical trainer who take care of him every day," Mahseredjian told Globo Esporte.

"Secondly, he has no problems that make him fat because he does not acquire weight easily.

"Third, he's very young and has a huge will, which makes his preparation for the World Cup much easier. I'm sure he has plenty of time to get to the first game."

While Mahseredjian acknowledged a lack of match sharpness could be an issue, he welcomed the prospect of Neymar uniting with his Brazil team-mates without enduring the wear and tear that comes with a domestic season finale at club level.

"Neymar will come with a very low workload, both of games and of training, basically as if it were a pre-season," he explained.

"The surgery will subtract from his physical condition, making him lose the physical effects he won during PSG's season.

"I say without any problem that it is good for us, since he will not be arriving with a high load of games.

"He will probably come to us well physically and, we believe, psychologically as well."

Neymar has 28 goals in 30 appearances since joining PSG from Barcelona for €222million last August but is unlikely to feature for Unai Emery's men again this season, with surgery scheduled for Saturday.

The final game of the Ligue 1 season against Caen on May 19 could be a possible target, while the Champions League final in Kiev is on May 26. PSG's 3-1 deficit against Real Madrid at halfway in their last-16 tie means that showpiece game remains some way out of reach at this stage.