The World Cup will now go on without one of its biggest stars - but could it have been avoided?
Brazil’s talisman Neymar has broken vertebrae after this tackle and will not kick another ball in the tournament.
As that news echoes around the football world, the question coming up again and again is - would this have happened if the game had been refereed differently up until that point?
Of course Zúñiga is responsible for vicious plays on Neymar/Hulk. But referee helped create environment where players didn't fear cards.— Grant Wahl (@GrantWahl) July 5, 2014
Long before the injury occurred, questions were being asked about the referee’s grip on the game.
Despite Colombian star James Rodriguez in particular being on the receiving end of some very strong challenges, the game went to halftime without a card being issued.
38 fouls. No cards. OK...— James Horncastle (@JamesHorncastle) July 4, 2014
Colombian players arguing with the ref
It took until the 64th minute for the first card to appear and in total during the match four players received yellow cards and no-one saw red. This despite a record breaking foul rate.
Others have defended the referee and undoubtedly the players are ultimately responsible for the challenges they make.
@IanRidley1 Complete conjecture; responsibility lies solely with players; referees don't make the tackles.— Brian Moore (@brianmoore666) July 5, 2014
But could more rigorous punishment in the early part of the game have prevented this?