Tottenham Hotspur boss Mauricio Pochettino has stated that Erik Lamela is on the way back to White Hart Lane after a period of rehabilitation in Rome. The Argentinean winger has been sidelined for approximately three months, carrying a hip injury which requires a considerable amount of time to heal. He will be available for selection in near future.
“Tomorrow we expect that he will be here and in the moment that he arrives (we need) to assess him and try to see how he is,” Pochettino stated to the club’s official website.
“The last scan in Rome showed no issues, there is still pain in his hip joint but now it’s important to meet us, stay here with the group and (for us to) try to push him to build his fitness to help him to achieve the level of the team and be available as soon as possible to try to help the team.”
The 24-year-old returned to his former club AS Roma, where he made most of his name before moving to the north London club, in efforts to assist his recovery. He has a strong personal connection with the physiotherapist at the Italian outfit. Not long ago, Lamela also caught up in a dinner with former teammate Federico Fazio, who is currently enjoying a loan spell from Spurs to Roma, and talks are ongoing to make the deal permanent.
Pochettino added that the club are doing their best to get the versatile attacker back on the pitch. While being held up with recovery routines, the former River Plate prodigy was linked with a number of suitors as rumours indicated that he is not happy at the club. Even Roma was part of the pecking order too. However, the Spurs manager confirmed earlier that his compatriot remains as a vital part of his plan and the player is happy.
Lamela’s time in England’s top flight has endured mixed fortunes. He took some time to settle and eventually turned into an important cog in Pochettino’s attacking wheel. Particularly in the previous campaign when Tottenham were in the title race. This term too, they have missed his healthy blend of pace and trickery along the flanks.
On the other hand, even if Lamela returns with impressive fitness test results, he would find first-team opportunities limited, due to the plethora of quality options at the moment. Pochettino’s men are in a rich vein of form, sitting 3rd in the Premier League, with 9 points adrift of league leaders Chelsea.
On Saturday, Tottenham managed to edge past Wycombe 4-3 in the FA Cup fourth round. Just like the scoreline, it as a tight and tense affair, and the home side’s fighting spirit was fairly too much for the visitors, who crumbled in the closing stages. Besides that, the north London side have secured a place in the Europa League, therefore Lamela might get a comeback call in either cup matches to impress his manager to unseat any of the starters and turn him into a mainstay once again.
Next up for Spurs is an away tie to Sunderland. After a 7-goal thriller against Gareth Ainsworth’s strong-willed side, they could expect similar heroics from the Black Cats, who are stumbling at the roots of the league.
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