Atletico Madrid winger Arda Turan has spent the past couple weeks battling through a groin injury suffered on April 1, but has been cleared to return to action, according to the club's official website on Sunday.
The 27-year-old Turkey international was forced to miss Atletico's second leg against Barcelona on April 9 as a result of the injury, but the short-handed squad was still able to pull out a hard-fought 1-0 victory to advance to the Champions League semifinals, as noted by Bleacher Report U.K. columnist Janusz Michallik on Twitter:
No Diego Costa, no Arda Turan. Atleti fully deserving. Congrats to the mattress-makers.— Janusz Michallik (@JanuszESPN) April 9, 2014
It appeared possible that Arda would suit up for Atletico in the second showdown with Barca, but head coach Diego Simeone wisely took the patient approach, via ESPN FC's Dermot Corrigan:
"We will weigh up Arda’s fitness after today’s session. Just like Costa he has not been able to train with the group for a few days, but they are both very important players for the team."
The announcement is splendid news for Simeone's squad, who will need the dynamic midfielder at 100 percent in order to improve their chances of overcoming Chelsea's stout defense.
While Arda hasn't blossomed into an elite goal scorer at the La Liga level since signing with Atletico back in 2011, he has been a key player for Los Rojiblancos in the Champions League, scoring three goals and assisting on another in seven appearances in 2013-14.
According to WhoScored.com, Arda has been most effective this season when playing on the left side of the pitch. Although he's scored a goal and recorded an assist in two appearances as an attacking midfielder on the right, he boasts an average match rating of 7.4 when he lines up as a midfielder on the left, scoring five goals and assisting on three others in 11 appearances.
Therefore, it'll be interesting to see where and how Atletico utilizes him against Chelsea.
Having missed an extended period of time, rust is sure to be a factor for Arda as he makes his way back to 100 percent. However, so long as he can return to his play-making role, he's certain to make an impact for the Spanish powerhouse.
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