Previously injured stars are set to return in force when the Premier League restarts, hopefully sometime in June, with Paul Pogba, Marcus Rashford, Harry Kane and Heung-min Son have all been declared fit.
Man United and Tottenham have been handed a huge boost in their bid to finish in the top four of the Premier League, as these star attackers would have likely missed the rest of the season had it finished as planned on May 17.
That said, as Jose Mourinho told our partners Sky Sports, being free from injury is one thing but being match fit is another.
“I cannot say in this moment they are ready to play because one thing is to recover from an injury, and another is to be ready to play football,” Mourinho said. “In Harry’s case, I think for about five months he hasn’t played, but all of them are not injured any more. They are training, and training is what it is at the moment, training has a lot of limitations. We cannot compete, we cannot do one versus one, we have to keep a certain distance, we cannot compete.”
“Harry Kane, Son, Bergwijn, Sissoko, all of them are fine. I think with a couple of weeks of normal training, when the authorities tell us we can train normally I think in a couple of weeks, the boys will be ready to play, of course not in the maximum of their potential, I think nobody can do that in this moment. For us, of course, it is a great feeling, because we finished the period with that defeat at Leipzig, where we were really, really in trouble to have 11 players, including attacking players, and in this moment (Erik) Lamela, Son, Dele (Alli), Harry Kane, Bergwijn, everybody is fit now.”
Mourinho will now be delighted that Premier League clubs have voted unanimously to resume contact training as he can step things up. With Spurs seven points off the top four as thing stand, they will need a storming finish to have any chance whatsoever of finishing in the top four. Can they do it? Sure. They face Arsenal, Leicester and Man United in their final nine games but the rest look pretty winnable.
Speaking about Man United, they remain firmly in the top four hunt as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side are just three points behind fourth-place Chelsea.
Asked about the availability of Pogba and Rashford, Solskjaer told MUTV that they are almost ready to roll.
“They’re looking good, they’ve joined training now and they’ve done everything the other boys have been doing. No reaction so far, touch wood,” Solskjaer said. “When we get started, it looks like we can have a full squad to choose from.”
Simply put: when the Premier League returns it will be with a full compliment of stars for the final nine games of the season.
That will be a sight to behold, as several stars will have been glad to have had time to recover so they can help their clubs at the business end of the season.