LONDON (AP) — Key Italy midfielder Riccardo Montolivo broke his left tibia during a friendly with Ireland on Saturday and will miss the World Cup.
Italy physician Enrico Castellacci says "Montolivo has what we suspected, a broken tibia. I haven't seen the X-ray yet to evaluate the extent of it but for a broken bone you can expect surgery."
Reading fullback Alex Pearce fouled Montolivo in the ninth minute at Fulham's Craven Cottage and Montolivo was carried off on a stretcher.
Montolivo knew immediately what was wrong, as he appeared to be say "it's broken" as fellow players and medical staff hovered around him anxiously while he was still lying on the pitch.
He was then brought to a London hospital for X-rays.