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 By Ben Gladwell

Vidal: Knee problems not Juve's fault

Chile midfielder Arturo Vidal has exonerated his club Juventus from blame over their handling of his recent knee injury, saying it had been his decision to delay an operation.

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Vidal underwent surgery on his right knee as soon as Juve had sealed the Serie A title in May, but had been carrying an injury for over a month.

Chile's doctors appeared perplexed by the delay to Vidal's operation, but the 27-year-old, who played in the 3-1 win over Australia, said the decision had been his.

"I wanted to play -- it was all down to me," he told La Gazzetta dello Sport. "Following the operation, I always thought I was going to make the World Cup.

"I was doing 12 hours of rehab every day, doing everything I could to be here, even if it was not clear whether I might miss the first match or the entire tournament.

"But I'm fine now, and I'm no longer thinking about my knee. I'm in touch with Juve's doctors, and the communication is good. I'm feeling good."

Vidal said it had not been easy for him in the Australia game, but stressed: "I believe I'll be in better shape against Spain and even better against the Netherlands. If I don't play against Spain, it will only be because the coach makes that decision."

He said his desire to play in a World Cup for Chile was such that "I would have come here even with only one leg" and warned that it would be "extremely tough against a wounded Spain."

But he said Chile would go all-out for victory against Vicente del Bosque's side, who are reeling from their 5-1 defeat to Netherlands.

"We're a side who attack our opponents right from the off," Vidal added. "Everybody says we're a bit suicidal -- we like to attack high up the field, keep the ball and always be on the attack, and it's going to be a spectacular game against Spain.

"They need to win to stay in the tournament, but we've come here with the intention of winning this World Cup."


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