MADRID – Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane expressed on Friday his regret for the foot surgery Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar Jr. is set to undergo which will keep him out of the upcoming second leg of the UEFA Champions League round of 16 against Los Blancos.
Neymar is likely to miss the rest of the season as it may take him up to three months to recover from the upcoming operation to repair the fractured fifth metatarsal in his right foot, set to take place on Saturday in Brazil.
“We feel sorry for Neymar but PSG is a strong team and whoever replaces him will certainly be good,” Zidane said during a press conference ahead of the La Liga match against Getafe.
“We do not expect the game to be easy, not at all. It is a round of 16 Champions League match and we will have to be at 200 percent, whoever plays,” he added. “Neymar’s replacement will do well because he will want to prove his worth to the team.”
The Brazilian star forward sustained the injury during Ligue 1 PSG’s 3-0 win Sunday against rival Marseille.
Meanwhile, the 45-year-old Real Madrid manager was pleased that defender Marcelo had recovered from his injury and would be available during the La Liga game against Getafe.
“The important thing is that Marcelo is available tomorrow and we’ll see about the others. The way the players feel is the most important thing and I want them to be 100 percent,” Zidane said.