Italy goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon is likely to be out of action for up to four months with a herniated disc but will put off surgery until after the World Cup finals.
Buffon, who will be replaced in goal by Federico Marchetti for the game against New Zealand on Sunday, refuses to give up on his World Cup dream. He will remain with the squad as he attempts to battle on and play a part in Italy's campaign.
But the news will dash any hopes Juventus had of cashing in on the 32-year-old this summer, with the goalkeeper set to miss much of the first half of the new Serie A season.
Buffon will undergo an operation after the finals to correct the problem.
"I thought a lot about it,'' said Buffon. "But I have to think about myself before anything else. I will have an operation in Italy after the World Cup.''
He added in Gazzetta dello Sport:"I hope I can make it even though it will be tough. But I have to for Italy. I want the final. I would never say no to Italy. They would have to kick me out."