Stephan El Shaarawy's return to Roma hasn't gone as swimmingly as we hoped back in January. Through eleven appearances in all competitions, El Shaarway has registered one goal and one assist, looking instrumental one minute and out of synch the next. However, when you consider the fact that he played just 16 games during his two-year stint in Shanghai, we probably should have penciled in more inconsistency than we've seen, quite frankly.
Up and downs aside, El Shaarawy's return to form was just dealt another blow:
According to Sky Sport, El Shaarawy will miss up to 15 days after suffering an injury in Roma's 2-2 draw with Sassuolo last weekend. The knock, which forced El Shaarawy off the pitch in the 74th minute, has now been ruled as a strain to his right thigh flexor. Due to this injury, the 28-year-old Italian international will miss domestic fixtures against Bologna and Torino, as well as both legs of Roma's Europa League Quarterfinal matchup against Dutch club Ajax.
In the grand scheme of things, this is a relatively minor concern, but when you consider how little he's actually played over the past two years, this type of injury isn't exactly surprising—it probably should have been expected. El Shaarawy's return to Roma will ultimately bear fruit, but we should have always tempered expectations for these first few months—he just needs to get up to speed, full stop.
This injury will delay his full return to form, of course, but keep the faith: El Shaarawy will be a huge part of Roma's next wave of success.