Injured Deco out of Libertadores quarter-final

Rio de Janeiro, May 15: Former Portugal midfielder Deco will miss both legs of Fluminense’s Copa Libertadores quarter-final against Boca Juniors with a thigh injury.

The 34-year-old tore his right quadriceps muscle during Fluminense’s 1-0 victory over Botafogo in the final of the Campeonato Carioca in Rio Sunday.

Fluminense coach Abel Braga confirmed the former Porto, Chelsea and Barcelona star would be unavailable for at least two weeks.

It means he will miss Thursday’s duel against Boca at the Bombonera in Buenos Aires and the return match in Rio May 23.

“If we get through to the semi-finals we will have a week’s rest and perhaps he will be able to rejoin us then,” Braga was quoted as saying by Xinhua.

Deco’s injury comes just days after his teammate Fred was also ruled out of Thursday’s match in Argentina with a thigh injury.

“We are sorry not to have them playing because of the quality they bring to the team,” Braga said. “But we have confidence in our group and now it gives a chance to other players to show what they are capable of.”

IANS