TERESOPOLIS: Brazil’s injured striker Neymar will attend Saturday’s third place play-off when the battered World Cup hosts take on the Netherlands.
Brazil were consigned to the ignominy of fighting out a game Dutch coach Louis van Gaal has attacked as “unfair” after their 7-1 semi-final mauling by Germany.
Neymar’s absence dominated the build-up to Tuesday’s humiliation. The Barcelona striker missed out after fracturing vertebrae in the quarter-final win over Colombia.
“Neymar will come here (to Brazil’s World Cup base), he’s going to accompany the team to Saturday’s match,” confirmed Brazil football federation spokesman Rodrigo Paiva to R7.com.
Paiva announced the news at Brazil’s World Cup headquarters in Teresopolis, near Rio de Janeiro.
The Barcelona superstar’s absence and as importantly that of suspended defender and captain Thiago Silva contributed to Tuesday’s shocking Belo Horizonte battering by a Germany side that now faces Argentina in Sunday’s final.
Van Gaal’s Holland find themselves in the play-off after Wednesday’s 4-2 penalty shoot-out loss to Argentina.
Afterwards van Gaal attacked the play-off, saying: “I think this match should never be played.
“It’s unfair also because we have one less day to recover, so that’s not fair play But the worst thing is that chances are you lose twice in a row.”