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Neymar returns to training with Brazil squad

National team’s medical staff say star man is in the final phase of his recovery

Gulf News

Rio de Janeiro: Paris St-Germain forward Neymar trained freely as Brazil began their preparations for next month’s Fifa World Cup in Russia.

Neymar has not played since suffering a cracked fifth metatarsal in his right foot in late February.

He underwent surgery in the Brazilian city of Belo Horizonte on March 3 and is now in the final phase of his recovery, according to the Brazil team’s medical staff.

The 26-year-old was put through a series of routine physical tests before completing an hour of ball work at Brazil’s Granja Comary training base in Terespolis on Tuesday.

Neymar is expected to step up the intensity of his training in the coming days. Brazil national team doctor Rodrigo Lasmar has said the former Santos prodigy is on track to be in peak condition for Brazil’s first World Cup match against Switzerland on June 17.

Brazil will warm up for the tournament with friendlies against Croatia and Austria on June 3 and 10.

Despite his long injury layoff, Neymar scored 28 goals and provided 16 assists across all competitions for Paris Saint-Germain this season following his record 222 million-euro transfer from Barcelona in August.