Neymar out of World Cup with fractured vertebra

For complete World Cup 2014 coverage visit Yahoo Sports and follow @YahooSoccer

Neymar was taken off on a stretcher in the 88th minute of Brazil's 2-1 win over Colombia after getting kneed in the back by Juan Camilo Zuniga. He was immediately taken to a local hospital in a tremendous amount of pain and a short time later, Brazil's team doctor confirmed that he will miss the remainder of the World Cup with a fractured vertebra.

From Reuters:

Rodrigo Lasmar told Brazil's SportTV: "It's not serious in the sense that it doesn't need surgery, but he'll need to immobilize it to recover.

"Unfortunately, he's not going to be able to play," said Lasmar, adding that he expected the recovery period to take at least a few weeks.

[Photos: Neymar suffers serious injury in win vs. Colombia]

Neymar's absence for the semifinal against Germany will be a devastating loss for Brazil. Along with David Luiz, he has been the shining star of a team that thus far has been very unconvincing. He leads Brazil with four goals in five matches.

However, Yahoo global football ambassador Jose Mourinho believes that the absence of captain Thiago Silva, who will be suspended for Brazil's next match because of yellow card accumulation, will hurt the team more than the loss of Neymar. But with both players out, the order of importance is irrelevant. This is a combination of absolute nightmare circumstances that could be too much to overcome for the host nation, which dreamed of finally avenging the still painful 1950 World Cup loss on home soil.

  (Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)
  (Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)

Related World Cup coverage on Yahoo Sports: