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Five-time world champions Brazil have already qualified for the Round of 16 at the FIFA World Cup with a game to spare in the group stage. However, they missed the services of their star Neymar in the Group G clash against Switzerland, which they won by a 1-0 margin. Brazil management is confident that Neymar will return to lead their bid to win a sixth World Cup despite the world’s most expensive player suffering an ankle injury in their opening match in Qatar. The Brazil captain came off late on in Thursday’s 2-0 win over Serbia with what was later diagnosed as a sprained ankle.

Doubts have even been raised in some quarters that he might struggle to feature again at the tournament, which finishes with the final in Doha on December 18. However, with the original Neymar not on the field, the football fans were seen flocking to click photos with the ‘fake’ Neymar during Brazil’s match against Switzerland.

The Neymar lookalike goes by the name of Sosia Doney and has more than 8.50 lakh followers on Instagram. He regularly posts videos of people mistakenly identifying him as Neymar.

Talking about Neymar’s return to the field, defender Marquinhos, who is also a teammate of the forward at Paris Saint-Germain, said the star has been spending his days undergoing intensive physiotherapy in an attempt to recover full fitness as soon possible.

“At the time it was difficult for him and after the game he was sad which I think is normal given how much he has dreamt of this,” centre-back Marquinhos said at a press conference in the Qatari capital on Sunday.

“Now, after the tests and the treatment, he is doing physiotherapy 24 hours a day which shows how much he wants to be back with us.

“We don’t know when, but we hope it’s as soon as possible.”

With AFP inputs

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