Nainggolan apologizes to Rafinha for causing season-ending injury
Roma’s Radja Nainggolan has apologized to Barcelona midfielder Rafinha for his hard tackle in Wednesday’s Champions League draw, which caused a season-ending knee injury.
In the 61st minute of Wednesday’s match, Rafinha came in for Ivan Rakitic, but it took only a minute for Nainggolan to tackle the Brazilian form behind and leave the 22-year-old in a crumpled heap on the pitch, writhing in obvious pain.
Rafinha was then stretchered off the pitch by the club’s medical staff and was replaced by Mascherano.
Rafinha underwent a series of tests in the dressing room and was seen leaving on crutches as the team flew back to Barcelona.
The La Masia graduate underwent a series of tests on Thursday morning to determine the extent of the injury, which confirmed Barcelona’s worst possible fears: an anterior cruciate ligament tear.
On Thursday, Barcelona made the announcement that the promising young Brazilian international would miss the remainder of the 2015-16 season as he begins the lengthy recovery process.
“Tests this morning have revealed that FC Barcelona midfielder Rafael Alcántara — also known as ‘Rafinha’ — has suffered a tear to the anterior cruciate ligament in his right leg. He will undergo surgery in the coming days.”
Following the devastating news, Nainggolan reached out to Rafinha to apologize to the young Brazilian and hoped to see him back on the pitch very soon.
“Hello Rafinha, I’m very sorry about the bad news, it wasn’t my intention to hurt you. I hope to see you on the pitch very soon, a big hug!”
Nainggolan received a yellow card for the foul, while Rafinha awaits to undergo surgery before his lengthy recovery process.