Tottenham Hotspur’s absent star Erik Lamela is struggling to get over the death of his dog Simba as he continues his rehabilitation from a hip injury in Rome.
amela has not played for Tottenham since October last year when he first suffered a hip problem in training, which sparked a run of bad luck that has kept him out of manager Mauricio Pochettino’s side.
The 24-year-old’s recovery was put on hold when he was forced to rush back to Argentina after his brother was seriously injured in an accident.
Lamela returned to England to find his injury had got worse and then suffered the blow of his beloved dog Simba dying, before requesting to undergo the rest of his rehab in Rome.
The death of Simba is understood to have been particularly upsetting for Lamela, who shared pictures of himself with his pet on social media and spoke fondly of his dog to Tottenham’s official website.
Pochettino revealed at the start of the month that Lamela needed a change of scene and that he had given the green light for the £30million signing to go to Rome to work on his fitness and his mental state.
Lamela underwent a scan on his hip in Rome last Friday that revealed no major problems and he remains in Italy working on his fitness with no date yet set for his return.
He has been spending time with his fellow Argentine Federico Fazio, who is on loan at Roma from Tottenham.
While Tottenham continue to wait on Lamela, the club are hopeful that defenders Toby Alderweireld and Danny Rose will be fit for their next Premier League game against Sunderland next Tuesday night.
Alderweireld was taken off as a precaution with a tight hamstring against Manchester City, while Rose left the stadium with his knee in a brace but Spurs are optimistic on both men.
Pochettino has taken his players on a warm weather training break to Barcelona this week and neither Alderweireld nor Rose would have been expected to play in Saturday’s FA Cup tie against Wycombe.