Neymar out of World Cup: Colombia defender Juan Camillo Zuniga defends challenge

The hosts will play the rest of the tournament without their talisman

Simon Rice@simonrice
Saturday 05 July 2014 11:20
Juan Camilo Zuniga challenges Neymar
Juan Camilo Zuniga challenges Neymar

Juan Camillo Zuniga has quickly become the most vilified man in Brazil after his challenge ruled Neymar out of the rest of the World Cup.

The Colombia defender clattered into the back of the hosts' talisman with his knee during Brazil's 2-1 quarter-final win in Fortaleza.

The challenge by the 28-year-old was not punished with a yellow card but the 28-year-old, who plays his club football for Serie A side Napoli, will not be able to forget it he who was responsible for ruling Neymar out - particularly if Brazil fail to win the World Cup on home soil.

Despite the rough nature of the challenge that flattened the Brazil number 10, Zuniga defended himself after the match by insisting he was "playing for the shirt from my country, not with the intent to injure".

Brazil are through to a semi-final against Germany with the winner of that match going on to play in the final at the Maracana on July 13.

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