Radamel Falcao tore his ACL in Wednesday's Coupe de France match. (ZumaPress.com)
The World Cup will go on without one of the world's finest players.
Monaco confirmed on its official website that Colombia star Radamel "El Tigre" Falcao tore his ACL in Wednesday's Coupe de France victory over fourth-tier Chasselay Monts d’Or Azergues, and he is likely to miss this summer's showcase. For what it's worth, Monaco did not provide a clear injury timeline stating that Falcao would miss the tournament. He is slated to have surgery to repair the ACL in the coming days, but with the World Cup less than five months away and ACL tears typically taking longer than that to heal, it would be nothing short of outrageous to expect a comeback that soon.
While Colombia clearly suffers the most, Falcao's injury is a blow to everyone hoping for an epic World Cup (not to mention Monaco's hopes at winning Ligue 1). At 27, Falcao is at the height of his prime and was poised to shine on his home continent as one of the tournament's top players. Instead, his absence severely hampers Colombia's chances -- though Los Cafeteros boast talent like Jackson Martinez, James Rodriguez and Teofilo Gutierrez -- while depleting the overall star power in the 32-team field.
Video of the play that took Falcao out is below:
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The injury brings up a number of questions, all of which come with the caveat of hindsight being 20-20. Why was Falcao playing in a cup match against fourth-tier competition to begin with? What in the world was that defender thinking on that tackle? How was a penalty not called on the play?
Sadly, no answer will magically heal Falcao's ACL. His injury is a sobering reminder that all players across the world, no matter how great, are just one unfortunate incident away from missing out on the World Cup.