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Italian club Napoli back Colombia's Juan Zuniga over challenge on Neymar

Tuesday, 8 July 2014 - 6:32pm IST | Agency: Reuters

  • AFP

Napoli have backed their Colombia defender Juan Zuniga over his challenge on Neymar that forced the Brazil forward out of the World Cup with a fractured bone in his back.

"Napoli regrets the injury Neymar suffered that will prevent him playing in the semi-final (later on Tuesday) against Germany," the Italian club said on their website (www.sscnapoli.it). "Best wishes to the Brazilian champion for a speedy recovery," they added.

"At the same time, the club expresses its solidarity with Zuniga, who has come under ferocious criticism and received threats of all kinds due to a foul that was unfortunate due to its consequences but not malicious."

Napoli noted that Zuniga had not been punished for the challenge by the referee of the World Cup quarter-final, which Brazil won 2-1, and had later been cleared by FIFA's Disciplinary Committee.

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