£129m Neymar facing surgery and four months out of action

October 19 – Neymar’s rollercoaster season on and off the pitch has taken another damaging hit after he ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament and meniscus in his left knee while on international duty.

The Brazilian superstar, who joined the exodus to Saudi Arabia by signing for Al Hilal, suffered the injury in Tuesday’s 2-0 defeat to Uruguay. He left the pitch at the Estadio Centenario in Montevideo in tears on a stretcher after receiving treatment for several minutes and now looks set to be sidelined for several months.

Al Hilal posted on X: “He will be going through surgery and then a treatment programme that will be determined later. Return stronger Neymar.”

The ex-Barcelona forward left Paris Saint-Germain this summer to join Al Hilal on a two-year deal worth £129.4 million a year, but has only scored once in five games for the Saudi side following his £86.3 million move.

Brazil’s all-time male top scorer, he missed two World Cup games in Qatar last year after he was injured in Brazil’s opener against Serbia.

Earlier this year, he underwent ankle surgery that required months of recovery and has now written on Instagram: “It’s a very sad time, the worst. I know I’m strong but this time I’m going to need my family and friends even more.

“It’s not easy to go through injury and surgery. Imagine going through it all again after four months of recovery.”

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