France winger Franck Ribery has said he rejected a cortisone injection recommended by the national team's medical staff during his unsuccessful battle to recover from a back injury in time for the World Cup.
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The Bayern Munich player revealed he had turned down the jab as he responded to comments made by team doctor Kevin Le Gall.
Le Gall, helping France prepare to begin their campaign against Honduras in Porto Alegre on Sunday, told journalists that Ribery, 31, was afraid of needles and so had not been offered that form of the treatment.
And he hit out at Bayern, saying: "Franck belongs to a club whose method of treatment for all ailments, whatever they might be, is based on injections."
But speaking to German news agency SID, Ribery said: "I'm not afraid of injections, but I didn't want to have a cortisone injection from the French doctor. I know it's not good."
Ribery, who has scored 16 times in his 80 international appearances, had been expected to be a key player for France, and his loss is a blow to coach Didier Deschamps' hopes in Brazil.