FIFA World Cup Germany 2006

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Monday, February 27, 2006

Totti's Pain

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Italian striker Francesco Totti broke his leg in Sunday's Serie A match against Empoli and will need 2-3 months to recover, but should return for the World Cup in June, his surgeon announced.

"It was a serious injury ... but we are optimistic about the World Cup," said Dr PierPaolo Mariani, who operated on Totti for more than two hours at a local clinic.

The World Cup in Germany begins on June 9 with Italy scheduled to play Ghana, the Czech Republic and the United States in the first round.

"He's a very important player for the national team. It would be a pity not to have him in the World Cup. We will be waiting for him and will do everything possible to recover him in time," Italy coach Marcello Lippi said.

The 29-year-old Totti was injured 12 minutes after kickoff, straining ligaments in his left ankle and fracturing his fibula when tackled from behind.

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