Despite being injured and having undergone surgery, Barcelona defender Ronald Araujo was named in the Uruguay squad for the upcoming FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar.
The 23-year-old sustained a thigh injury while on international duty in September and opted to go under the knife to treat it. Upon surgery, it was expected that the centre-back could be on the shelf for 2-3 months, which cast doubts over his involvement in the World Cup.
But, in order to make himself available for the coveted tournament, Araujo has pushed himself to recover in time. Happy with how things have progressed, Uruguay manager Diego Alonso included him in the squad for the trip to Qatar.
Now, journalist Roger Torello is reporting that Araujo is in the ‘final stretch’ of his recovery and is pushing himself to participate in the tournament. This comes after footage of Araujo doing light training with the national team emerged earlier today.
Barcelona gave the defender the green light to travel to Qatar as long as he was accompanied by a club physio who could track his recovery and fitness.
Reports even suggested that there was a gentleman’s agreement between the club and the Uruguayan Football Federation that Araujo will only be used in the knockout stages of the World Cup and will not be risked in the group phase.
And Torello adds that Barça continue to hope that the defender features only after Uruguay make it to the knockout rounds as they want him to avoid the risk of an injury relapse.
Uruguay, who will also count on former Barcelona superstar Luis Suarez, have been drawn in Group H which also consists of Son Heung-min’s South Korea, Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal, and Ghana.
So, things will be tricky for La Celeste and they might have to rely on Araujo earlier than expected. It remains to be seen how things progress with regard to his recovery over the coming week, given that there are still ten days before Uruguay play their first match.