Brazil now needs to prepare without Neymar and key defender Silva for their second meeting with Germany in the World Cup at Belo Horizonte on Tuesday
Brazil aiming to win this year's World Cup suffered two major blows with star striker Neymar ruled out due to a fractured vertebrae and suspension of its captain Thiago Silva during its match with Colombia.
Brazil lost superstar striker Neymar for the World Cup after he fractured a vertebrae during his side's 2-1 World Cup quarter final win over Colombia.
Colombia defender Juan Zuniga kneed the 22-year-old Neymar in a crunching tackle and the Barcelona player was stretchered off in agony in the closing minutes of the game in Forteleza.
The injury and the suspension of captain Thiago Silva for the semi-final against Germany overshadowed a sensational David Luiz goal that sealed victory in one of the most physical games seen at this World Cup.
A hospital exam "showed he (Neymar) suffered a fracture of the third vertebra" in his back, team doctor Rodrigo Lasmar told reporters.
Brazil coach Luiz Felipe Scolari fumed that Neymar has been "hunted" throughout the tournament and that no punishment was given for the tackle on him.
"I have been saying for three matches that Neymar has been hunted, but all the other countries say it is not true and it is only their players that are hunted."
Silva was booked for a second time in the tournament for impeding a clearance by Colombian goalkeeper David Ospina.
But in Zuniga's case "there was not even a yellow card and Thiago got a yellow card for nothing," Scolari said.
Brazil are in the World Cup semi-finals for the first time in 12 years, but Scolari, who has vowed his side will win their sixth World Cup, now faces a major crisis.
Silva put Brazil ahead after seven minutes and Luiz scored a sensational 30 metre free kick to give Brazil victory.
Colombia's James Rodriguez extended his lead as the tournament's top scorer with his sixth goal in five games from the penalty spot after Julio Cesar brought down Carlos Bacca.
But Colombia now leave and Brazil must now prepare without Neymar and key defender Silva for only their second World Cup meeting with Germany in Belo Horizonte on Tuesday. The Germans beat France 1-0 earlier in the day.
Luiz's goal was another special moment in the World Cup.
"Today It was great because I hit the exact point where the ball can go many ways and it is difficult for the goalkeeper," said Luiz.
The 46 nurses set free by the militants of ISIS are expected to reach Kochi Saturday morning
A group of 46 Indian nurses held captive by Sunni militants of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in strife-torn Iraq have been set free and are being brought back home in a special Air India plane which left this evening for Erbil, a non-conflict zone.
The nurses are expected to reach Kochi Saturday morning, officials said on a day of dramatic developments in efforts to end their ordeal.
Air India is sending a Boeing 777 aircraft to bring back 46 nurses and other Indians stranded in strife-torn Iraq.
The Boeing 777 (Long Range), with a seating capacity for about 300 passengers, would shortly take off from Delhi's IGI Airport to Erbil in north Iraqi region of Kurdistan and is likely to return to Kochi on its way back.
Besides the Boeing 777, two Boeing 747 jumbos have been kept ready to fly at short notice, they said, adding that cockpit and cabin crew to operate them were also on standby.
These 46 Indian nurses, who were forced to move out of Tikrit city in Iraq's conflict zone, were on their way to Erbil, a non-conflict area in the country where a team of Indian officials was waiting to receive them. The flight would directly take them to Kochi as most of them are from Kerala.
The nurses were taken by Sunni militants ISIS on Friday from a hospital basement in Tikrit to an undisclosed location.
There were about 10,000 Indians before the start of the serious strife between government troops and Sunni militants, backed by al Qaida. The militants have captured two key cities and are marching towards Baghdad. Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis have been displaced in the fighting that broke out on 10th June.