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Steve Mandanda out for World Cup with neck injury

The France goalkeeper cracked a vertebra while playing for Marseille on Saturday.

France goalkeeper Steve Mandanda has been ruled out of the FIFA World Cup with a neck injury.

Mandanda cracked a vertebra while playing for Marseille against Guingamp on Saturday and was immediately stretchered off the field, before being sent to the hospital.

Guingamp's Mustapha Yatabare collided with Mandanda in the 19th minute, with the striker's knee connecting with the neck and head of the 29-year-old goalkeeper, who had rushed off his line to smother a dangerous pass.

Club doctor Christophe Baudot said after the match that Mandanda would not discover his World Cup fate until he had seen a spinal specialist, but it was confirmed Sunday that he would be required to wear a neck brace for three weeks.

"Following the collision with Mustapha Yatabare during the match OM-Guingamp, Steve Mandanda has a stable crack the first cervical vertebra and whiplash," Baudot said. "This will force him to wear a neck brace for three weeks and to follow an equivalent period of rehabilitation."

The player took to Twitter later in the day to confirm his absence, saying: "It is with great sadness that I announce that unfortunately I cannot take my place in the World Cup. I wish the French team every success in the tournament."

France begins its World Cup campaign against Honduras in Porto Alegre on June 15.

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