Salvador Cabanas has been released from hospital but could take years to recover neurologically, his surgeon announced today.
The Paraguay forward has been in the Angeles del Pedregal hospital in Mexico City for over five weeks after he was shot in the head following an incident in a city bar.
Cabanas, who continues to have problems with his short-term memory, was yesterday transferred to a neurorehabilitation centre. Neurosurgeon Ernesto Martinez Duhart admitted they had no idea when or even if the 29-year-old would fully recover.
"He was transferred yesterday but we didn't want Salvador to be hounded by all of you because he becomes nervous," Martinez Duhart said at a press conference.
"He knows he is Salvador Cabanas and that he is a footballer, he recognises his parents and calls them by their name, but then he doesn't remember what he had for breakfast or what he did yesterday.
"We can't say that he is well yet, nor that his situation is permanent because neurological recovery can last one, two or three years. he's doing well but we have to wait for what the recovery of his functions will show us."
Doctors have opted not to remove the bullet from Cabanas' head, as they fear surgery would be too dangerous.
Cabanas is one of Paraguay's top players and was part of their FIFA World Cup™ squad in Germany four years ago. The 29-year-old is a prolific goalscorer and was expected to lead Paraguay's attack in South Africa this summer.
Sunderland manager Steve Bruce recently revealed he was interested in bringing the striker to the Barclays Premier League. Cabanas, who has scored over 100 times in the Mexican top flight, has netted 18 goals in 24 matches this season.