The reaction was immediate: all the footballers near the scene began to wave their arms to ask for quick medical intervention. The Porto defender Nanu had fallen seconds before after collide with Russian goalkeeper Stanislav Kritsyuk of the Belenenses and was on the ground unconscious. The situation spread through more than ten minutes and included the presence of a ambulance, which transferred the player to the hospital for comprehensive care.
One of the players who was most concerned was the former Real Madrid defender Pepe, who took his shirt and covered his face for several seconds as a clear sign of fear for what he was seeing. Meanwhile, specialists were working on the playing field on the health of the Guinea-Bissau-born footballer who made it to one of the most powerful teams in Portugal for this season.
The official medical report issued by the club deepened the uneasiness until now: “Nanu had a concussion and a spinal cord injury with loss of consciousness. At this moment he is stable, conscious and is already oriented in time and space ”. For now, the 26-year-old defender continues under medical observation at the Hospital S. Francisco Xavier, where he was initially treated by a neurosurgeon and where he underwent a CT scan.
“I wish Nanu the best. From what the doctors said, you have to be patient. I think that play was a penalty, but the referee was there to decide. I think that lack is clear. Today there is enough technology to clear doubts. I spoke to the assistant referee, he said it was an involuntary blow. But the goalkeeper hit Nanu. We need to clarify the criteria so that we can all understand. Because for us it is a criterion and for others it is different ”, Pepe analyzed what happened in statements collected by the Portuguese newspaper Record.
The one who was visibly more outraged was Francisco J. Marques, Porto’s communication director. “One day they will kill a FC Porto player but nothing will happen, because Fábio Veríssimo will find legitimate defense. And the disciplinary criteria? “He wrote on his social networks with a video that showed a series of hard fouls that occurred in the match between Porto and Belenenses that ended 0-0.
El juez Fábio Veríssimo he did not admonish goalkeeper Kritsyuk and did not charge a foul. It should be noted that Portuguese football was one of the first in the world to apply VAR after the Netherlands.
“I hope Nanu is well and quickly returns to the field. Considering that I have been insulted a lot on the Internet, I want to explain what happened: I tried to intercept the ball, Nanu and I headed towards it. I screamed that I was going to the ball. The replay clearly shows that my fists come right after Bruno Ramires’ leg. The decision of the referee and the VAR not to execute a penalty corroborates my words. The video shows it, I did not fly towards Nanu with my fists as shown in photographs or in angles of some videos. He came up to me and we hit our heads. There was no malice in my act. It could have been me who was in Nanu’s place. Nobody is to blame for what happened. It is sport and unfortunately sometimes these things happen ”, wrote the 30-year-old goalkeeper on his social networks after being criticized.
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