Saudi footballer Yasser Al Shahrani successfully underwent surgery on his pancreatic gland in hospital in Riyadh on Wednesday following a gruesome clash with goalkeeper Mohammed Al Owais during the team’s World Cup match with Argentina on Tuesday.
Al Shahrani suffered serious injuries when Al Owais leaped into the air to defend a shot, and ended up striking the defender from his own team in the face with his left knee, and in the abdomen with his right.
Thirty-year-old Al Shahrani was initially taken to a hospital in Qatar where he underwent a full medical checkup and spent the night, a spokesperson for the Saudi Arabian Football Federation said in a statement.
He was then moved to the National Guard Hospital in Riyadh for surgery.
“Everyone at the Saudi Arabian Football Federation wishes Yasser a full and speedy recovery,” the spokesperson added.
Al Shahrani earlier spoke from his hospital bed to assure fans he was recovering well after sustaining the injury.
He said: “I wanted to assure you that I am okay. Pray for me. And congratulations to our Saudi fans on the win. You deserve it.”
The collision resulted in a fractured jaw, broken facial bones and internal bleeding, according to local media reports.
In an earlier statement, the Saudi National Team said al-Shahrani’s condition was stable and is currently under observation.Saudi Arabia made a historic 2-1 win over Argentina on Tuesday, ending the South American giants’ 36-match unbeaten record at the Lusail Stadium.