After spending eight months sidelined with an abdominal injury, Tottenham right-back Kyle Walker returned to training on Wednesday.
Walker has not featured for Spurs since the first leg of the Europa League Round of 16 clash with Benfica last March.
The injury he sustained in that match required lower abdominal surgery this past September, a move the club initially thought they might be able to avoid.
Walker spoke to the club’s official website about his return to training:
“It’s great to be back out there with the lads. I’m taking it one step at a time, doing things correctly as I’ve been told, and I’ll see where I am in a couple of weeks. Everything is good at the moment. I’ll be even happier when I’m back playing but that’s the final step.”
No definitive date for his return to match fitness has been set.
“From my operation to my first day back in training was a 12-week programme and I didn’t miss a day’s work. I thought to myself, ‘I’m going to put my all into this’ and hopefully that will stand me in good stead in terms of training and then working my way back into the team. I’m taking it slowly and hopefully it won’t be too long before I’m back out there at White Hart Lane.”
When Walker does return it will be a massive boost for Spurs, who have deputized using a rotation of Kyle Naughton and Eric Dier. However, neither backup has earned the full confidence of manager Mauricio Pochettino leading many to believe that a January arrival of DeAndre Yedlin could be in the cards.
The Seattle Sounders full-back, who signed a pre-contract with Spurs last summer and has yet to decide if he will come to White Hart Lane in January or June, has been in sparkling form for his MLS side. With Naughton and Dier having failed to take full advantage of their chances and Walker facing a prolonged return to match fitness, the time could be ripe for Yedlin to make his move to North London.