Uruguay striker Luis Suarez insists he is fighting fit and ready for action ahead of his country’s defining fixture against England next week.
Suarez played no part in Uruguay’s surprise defeat to Costa Rica in their opening game of the World Cup due to a knee injury that threatened his participation in the tournament.
The Liverpool striker underwent surgery on meniscal damage that was discovered whilst training with the rest of his Uruguay teammates at the end of May and has been facing a race against time to be fit for his country.
There have been doubts over whether Suarez would be able to play any role in the World Cup with recovery times estimated to be anywhere from two to four weeks, although the Uruguayan FA have always been positive on the prospects of the Premier League star featuring.
Concerns were raised over the state of the 27-year-old’s fitness when he failed to be called upon from the bench despite the situation Uruguay found themselves in against Costa Rica when they were in desperate need of a goal to salvage anything from their opening fixture.
Suarez took part in training on Monday and insists he is fully fit to play his part in what is now a crucial fixture against England with both sides facing elimination from the competition having lost their opening games.
“I’m 100%, otherwise I wouldn’t be here,” Suárez told Uruguayan on Monday. “I knew it would be difficult [to be ready for] the first game, but if the proper time was left then I was going to be 100% afterwards. I’ve done everything I had to do.
“I’m training today with the team and I feel in good condition. I never lost the joy and the desire. I never thought I would miss the World Cup.”
The return of the Premier League’s Golden Boot winner is a timely boost for Oscar Tabarez’s side, who will be looking for the 27-year-old to provide some of the inspiration he provided for Brendan Rodger’s team last season, leading Liverpool to a second place finish and securing Champions League football.
Suarez netted 31 times in the Premier League last term even after missing the opening five games of the season due to serving a suspension for biting Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic at the end of the 2012/13 season and also finished as the top scorer in the South American World Cup qualifying section with 11 goals.
Uruguay will be hopeful that Suarez can recreate some of the excellent link up that he displayed so often with Daniel Sturridge last season with compatriot and Paris Saint Germain striker Edinson Cavani whilst the Reds ace will be looking to use his knowledge of England’s players having tormented many of them over the last few years.
Whether or not Suarez is genuinely fully fit remains to be seen but the striker will be desperate to play against an England team that is likely to feature five of his Liverpool teammates and with defeat unthinkable for either side Tabarez may not have any choice but to take a risk on his talisman.
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