Mauricio Pochettino has refused to rule out Danny Rose's return for Tottenham Hotspur's north London derby against Arsenal on Sunday (30 April) after the defender returned to first-team training this week.
The left-back was sidelined for almost three months with a knee injury he suffered during Spurs' 0-0 draw with Sunderland on 31 January. Rose has been a vital part of the squad this season and even made the PFA Team of the Year despite his lengthy absence.
The 26-year-old will complete a decade at Tottenham in July this year, but most of his early years were spent out on loan, before he returned from his final spell with Sunderland in May 2013. He has since gradually developed into a regular first-team player and is now considered a vital member of Pochettino's squad. Rose has also established himself as the first choice for England, following his debut in March last year.
Ben Davies has been an able deputy for the Three Lions star since the beginning of February, but is likely to make way for Rose makes, once he returns. But Pochettino has admitted that it will take time for Rose to get back to his best after three months without competitive football. Yet, he is of the view that it will be a big boost for the team, who are chasing Chelsea for the Premier League title.
"It's so difficult. Next Sunday will be three months that he got injured. We will see. Today he started to do some things with the group," Pochettino said ahead of Tottenham's game against Crystal Palace on Wednesday (26 April), as quoted by the Mirror.
"We will see how he reacts in the next few days. Then we will see. We have been careful with him but we are happy that he is in a good way. We hope he will be available as soon as possible to be selected.
"We need to check him and he needs to recover the feeling of the competition after three months. That is difficult for a player after three months. It's difficult but the door is not closed and we are flexible," the Argentine manager explained.