Granit Xhaka was spotted crying after picking up a knee injury during a training session with Switzerland.
The Arsenal midfielder was snapped covering his face before he was helped from the pitch, with serious doubts initially hanging over his World Cup participation.
The injury happened to his left knee during a ‘duel’, however manager, Vladimir Petkovic, has been criticised in some quarters for allowing training to take place on a heavily sodden pitch. A heavy thunderstorm left the pitch ‘badly affected by water’ but the Switzerland manager saw no reason to abandon the session.
The 25-year-old, who was one of Arsenal’s most consistent performers last season, was relieved to find out that the damage to his knee was no more than bruising rather than ligament damage as had been first feared.
“It’s just a painful bruise on the knee,” Swiss team doctor Pierre Etienne Fournier said.
Xhaka is expected to miss Switzerland’s warm-up game against Spain on Sunday and it is not yet clear when he will return to training but he is only expected to miss a few days.
The player himself said he was ‘very relieved’ when the test results returned.
Speaking to the media in his homeland earlier this week, Xhaka was asked about the criticism he received over the course of last season, especially from pundits.
Does it bother him? “No, I can deal with that, although I have not always understood the critical tones, and occasionally wondered who said it all, but there are comments from former greats for whom I have a great deal of respect.”