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Falcao may make it to the World Cup after all

Jan 25, 2014, 11:01 AM EDT

Radamel Falcao AP

On Wednesday, fans of soccer the world over watched in horror as Radamel Falcao went down with a knee injury, while playing for Monaco in the French Cup. It mattered little whether fans supported Monaco or Colombia – what seemed clear is that the World Cup would suddenly be without one of the most exciting strikers currently playing.

Colombia fans were hit hardest, of course. The country placed second in CONMEBOL qualification to secure a place in Brazil, scoring 27 goals in 16 matches. By the end of qualification, Colombia were ranked fourth in the world by FIFA. Seeded for the World Cup draw, Los Cafeteros found themselves in a fairly mild group, with Greece, Ivory Coast and Japan.

It would be unfair to the side to say that Falcao carried them to qualification. However, Falcao was the side’s top scorer, with nine goals from just twelve starts. Many of the country’s hopes were pinned on his being in form in Brazil. Suddenly, that hope seemed finished.

Is it cruel, then, that the doctor that performed Falcao’s surgery to suggest there’s still a chance that he’ll make it to the World Cup? The striker went under the knife on Saturday, with the doctor performing the operation stating that “it’s not out of the question” that Falcao will make it to Brazil, and even giving him a better than 50 percent chance.

Even without Falcao, Colombia have plenty of exciting attacking options. Jackson Martínez, and Teó Gutíerrez will be along for the ride, and James Rodríguez can play an advanced role. Fredy Montero, with 13 goals for Sporting Lisbon, could squeeze into the squad. Even Luis Muriel could step up.

But it’s Falcao that has shown the most value at the international level, and Falcao that means the most to this Colombia side. While expectation may be the root of all heartache, in this case, it may be to the supporters’ benefit that they’re allowed to dream of a World Cup with their top scorer leading the line.

  1. gor3hound - Jan 25, 2014 at 11:25 AM

    I don’t know if that is realistic, that kind of injury takes way more time when there is a serious PED control -unlike Nfl-, I just hope a speedy recovery, the sport needs more guys like Falcao.

    • guillaume811 - Jan 26, 2014 at 8:50 AM

      It is not going to happen. I am involved in these surgeries as an orthopedic surgeon. He will only start adequate training after 6 months and friendly soccer activities but will wait the least 8-9 months to be really in shape before serious soccer competition. Do not think about Falcao for the world cup, it is out of question. What I am presenting you comes with the best case scenario with no incident and with the best surgery

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