November 28, exactly two months after the surgery that Ronald Araujo had in Finland to treat his injury in the long adductor tendon of the right leg. How is Araujo? When will he be able to play? These are the two questions repeated within the Pullman hotel in Doha, where the Uruguayan delegation are staying.
The footballer’s recovery is going from strength to strength. Even a little faster than expected. He does intense physical work, on a par with his colleagues.
He already touched the ball, but he’s still not participating in the team trainings. “No opposition”, says a source from the Uruguayan Federation, according to MD.
That is the missing step. He is clearly in the last phase of the recovery process, 7 weeks after the operation. However, the next step is the actual competition, training with the ball and with the rest of his teammates. With opposition.
The Uruguayan NT will face Portugal for the second game of the group stage. Araujo is absolutely ruled out.
On Friday, December 2nd, Uruguay will play again, against Ghana. It seems difficult, not impossible, that he will get few minutes there. But at this point, the chances for that to happen are pretty slim. Obviously, there is an intermediate step, before playing: playing football with the rest of his teammates.
Actually, there are two steps. The other one is for the technical and medical staff of the Uruguayan Federation understand that Araujo completed the entire recovery process and is ready to play. The there will be a call from Doha to Barcelona.
Barcelona and Montevideo working together
There are documents signed between the FC Barcelona and the Uruguayan Federation regarding the guidelines for the recovery process of Ronald. The club and the Uruguayan team have specific guidlines until his medical discharge that will allow him to play. But before the papers, all sides agree that there should be consensus on this subject.
“Uruguay will take care of the player. We will never risk him. If the player is not fit, he will not play. It won’t make sense for the player, nor for Barcelona. And of course it won’t work for Uruguay”, according to a high source from the Charrúa Federation.
Meanwhile, the two Barcelona physios continue to stay with the Uruguayan delegation, and supervise the footballer’s recovery process. But they are almost invisible.
In the Uruguayan delegation they know precisely that FC Barcelona want him to play again for the League on December 31 at 2:00 p.m. against Espanyol. They handle the data accurately.
And they assume that Barça wanted to place Araújo in a glass box, close it with seven keys, throw it to the bottom of the sea, and unlock it on December 30.
Now we look at Friday the 2nd, when Uruguay plays Ghana. And if not there, then on December 6, for the round of 16. But Uruguay will have to qualify for that to happen.
“We take it day by day”, says another source, ratifying what the Uruguayan coach Diego Alonso said few days ago: “It will be Araújo’s body that speaks, and the one that will tell us when he is ready”.
This is how we are, two months after the operation in Finland. With the certainty that Araujo will come back stronger than before, and at the right time.