Rio de Janeiro: Injured Brazil forward Neymar has revealed that he will need to overcome a psychological barrier as he bids to return to full fitness ahead of the FIFA World Cup in Russia.
Neymar has not played since suffering a cracked fifth metatarsal in his right foot while playing for Paris Saint-Germain in late February, reports Xinhua news agency.
He underwent surgery in the Brazilian city of Belo Horizonte on March 3 and returned to Paris last week for the final phase of his recovery.
"I have started to walk again, but there is always a fear about coming back," the 26-year-old told Brazil great Zico in an interview published on YouTube. "I need to get over that fear as quickly as possible so that I can be flying by the time the World Cup comes around."
The former Santos prodigy said he was not sure if he would play for PSG again this season. Les Parisiens' last 2017-18 fixture will be a Ligue 1 clash against Caen on May 19.
Earlier this month, Brazil national team doctor Rodrigo Lasmar predicted the Brazil No.10 would be in peak condition for the World Cup. The Selecao will open their World Cup campaign against Switzerland on June 17.
Neymar has scored 28 goals and provided 16 assists across all competitions since arriving in the French capital from Barcelona for a world record fee of 222 million euros ($264 million) last August. He spoke fondly about his four seasons at Barcelona, especially his lethal partnership with Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez.
"We were inseparable and had enormous understanding," Neymar said. "Just by looking at each other we knew what to do," the 26-year-old said.