The Brazilian Football Federation (CBF) confirmed Neymar will miss the upcoming Copa America tournament through injury.
Neymar ruptured a ligament in his ankle during Brazil’s 2-0 friendly win over Qatar in Brasília on Wednesday night.
The Paris Saint-Germain striker lasted just 21 minutes on the pitch before Tite substituted him for Everton Soares. The injury occurred following Richarlison’s opener for Brazil and didn’t appear to result from any physical contact.
Brazil’s medical team later helped a hobbling Neymar into the tunnels and tended to his injury.
Now, the Selecao’s worst fears have are a reality as the injury-plagued star will be unavailable for the 2019 Copa America.
“Because of the seriousness of the injury, Neymar will not have the physical conditions or recovery time to compete in the Copa América,” read a CBF statement.
“As of Thursday, the coaching staff for the team will look at bringing in a replacement.”
Manchester City striker Gabriel Jesus scored a second goal just three minutes after Brazil took Neymar off to seal a 2-0 victory.
But now Brazil’s focus is to find an adequate replacement for Neymar in time for their Group A opener against Bolivia on June 14. Venezuela and Peru will also come up for them in the group stages.
Tite’s side are considered favourites for glory in the Copa America on home soil as they chase a ninth title and redeem themselves for their group stages exit in 2016.
However, one last friendly against Honduras will await Brazil first on Sunday.