Neymar: I was 2cm from a wheelchair
The striker visited his team mates at training on
Thursday for the first time since fracturing a vertebra in his back in
Brazil’s quarter-final victory over Colombia.
The 22-year-old was delighted to see his fellow squad members, albeit
after their humiliating 7-1 defeat at the hands of Germany.
“I am so elated to see my teammates again,” said the Selecao star.
“Of course the situation is bad, but just having the opportunity to walk in here makes me happy.
“As I said to them: ‘We started together and we finish together.’ It
was an historic defeat, but that doesn’t mean we have to walk with our
heads bowed. That’s sport. I hope we can smile again as soon as
The Barcelona frontman said he could not explain what happened
against Die Mannschaft, yet said he is still proud to be part of the
“I don’t know what happened against Germany, it was a blackout,” he
said. “It’s easy to talk after the game, but hard when you’re out there
on the pitch.
“I am not ashamed to say I was part of the team that lost 7-1. I’m
proud to say that I played with Thiago Silva, Fred and the others.”
Neymar then described “one of the worst weeks” of his life following
his injury, which could have been worse should he have been injured
lower down his back.
“It’s one of the worst weeks of my life,” he said. “I couldn’t have imagined a worse one.
“I will learn from it. God knows all and if he allowed this to happen, there must be a reason for it.
“I do not accept Zuniga saying it was a normal challenge. Everyone in
football knows that is not normal. The way he came in from behind, I
couldn’t defend myself against it.
“God has blessed me. If it was 2cm lower, I’d be in a wheelchair right now.
“Zuniga called me the next day and apologised. I feel no resentment and wish him all the best for his career.”
Neymar said he will be backing South American rivals Argentina in the
final – but only because of his Barca club team mates in the side.
“I wish both teams luck,” he said.
“I am not supporting Argentina, but my teammates Lionel Messi and Javier Mascherano.
“I support Messi FC and for everything he represents to football I hope he can win.”