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Doctor: Neymar 'Likely' to Play in FC Barcelona La Liga Debut

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David Ramos

Neymar Jr's recovery is going surprisingly well. In fact, he could be fit to play for Barça as soon as the team's La Liga debut.

Barcelona's doctor, Enric Cáceres, said in an interview to Catalan TV Esport3 that the Brazilian is "likely" going to be 100% for the first official season match, against Elche, on August 24th at the Camp Nou. The player wants to return to action one week early, at the Joan Gamper Trophy match against Mexico's León, but Cáceres wants to be cautious and prefers to have Neymar rest one more week before playing.

'Ney' joined Barça's squad on Tuesday and went straight to the gym for individual physical work. His quick progress allowed him to take off his restraining belt and replace it with just a soft strip that doesn't limit his movements as much.

The 22-year-old suffered a scary injury during the World Cup match between Brazil and Colombia. At the end of the game, Colombia's Zuñiga hit Neymar's back with his knee, causing a fracture in the transverse process of his third vertebrae. Neymar missed the rest of the tournament, and many expected his recovery to be a long one.

But he's back. And he's looking good. Cáceres said he'll train normally with the squad next week, and his debut is very likely to happen sooner than we thought.

Good news!