For all the luck Roma has had with the recoveries of Kevin Strootman and Antonio Rüdiger, lady fortune just turned her back on the Giallorossi. After tearing the ACL in his left knee in October, Alessandro Florenzi seemed in line for a rather miraculous comeback, returning to action some five months after this catastrophic injury. Given the speed with which Rüdiger returned, this seemed entirely plausible. Ale and Toni are roughly the same age and had few to no hiccups in their recovery process, and Florenzi had the added benefit of a relatively clean bill of health.
So while a five month return from an injury that used to require 12 months minimum seemed excessive, all signs pointed towards a healthy and hasty return for Florenzi. That is, until, this past week. Florenzi pulled up lame during a training match with the Primavera squad earlier this week, and what was once thought of as a simple knee sprain has morphed into our worst nightmares come true, a second tear of his left ACL.
Roma wasted no time addressing the issue, putting Florenzi under the knife (or its arthroscopic equivalent) today:
Alessandro Florenzi was today subjected to arthroscopic surgery, which confirmed the traumatic rupture of the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee
The transplant surgery saw [the torn ligament] subsequently replaced with [part of] the patellar tendon in his right knee.
The player will stay in hospital for a few days and begin the therapeutic process [of his recovery] next week, with a prognosis of five months.
Now, given all that we just discussed, you’ll be forgiven if you take that five month prognosis with a healthy dousing of salt. Just as we did with Strootman during his bouts of repeated ACL injuries, we have to progress as if Florenzi no longer exists; you cannot plan for next season assuming he’ll be a viable contributor. While this may sound harsh, it’s the very approach that (indirectly) landed Radja Nainggolan (if you assume he was a direct replacement for Strootman that is), so we have no other choice; until proven otherwise, we cannot assume or presume anything when it comes to Florenzi.
In the short run, it puts more pressure on Bruno Peres who, though he’s peaking at the right time, has not been without his bouts of inconsistency, while also robbing Roma of Florenzi’s incredibly versatile and valuable skill set.
So, sad as it might be, we’ll have to say goodbye to Florenzi until July at the earliest. Rest up, Ale!