Watford's Pereyra sent to Udinese to recover from knee injury

Watford's Pereyra sent to Udinese to recover from knee injury

Watford midfielder Roberto Pereyra is ruled out for the remainder of the season after picking up a knee injury at the Etihad Stadium against Manchester City in December but is making progress.

Adam Whiteside

Roberto Pereyra will continue his recovery from a knee injury in his home country of Italy following a spell of rehabilitation in Spain.

The midfielder will not feature again for the Hornets this season following a challenge with Pablo Zabaleta at the Etihad Stadium in December.

Pereyra’s recovery

The 26-year-old has been based in Barcelona for the beginning of his rehabilitation, however, he will now move to Italy to further his recovery with his former club Udinese.

Watford medical director Luca Gatteschi said: “He stayed in Barcelona as it was useful for the surgeon to assess him every week.

“To have him here (at London Colney), and then send him every four days for a flight to Barcelona, this is not good for the knee. It was better to stay there (in Barcelona) and work with the surgeon.”

Pereyra is now in north-east Italy which pleases Gatteschi: “We know the head physiotherapist of Udinese.

“I know him, he knows Cugat and this means the rehab works very well. It’s not that we don’t have good physios here. It’s just that there is not the possibility of Pereyra training with the team for a long time, so sometimes in this situation, it is better for the player not to be at the training ground.”

Watford missing their Italian midfielder

Since Pereyra was ruled out for the rest of the season following a 2-0 defeat away at Manchester City the Hornets have won just two Premier League games from a possible eight.

Between late December and January Watford went on a run of just one win in eight games with their only victory coming against Championship opposition Burton Albion.

The Hornets have benefitted from an upturn in fortunes in recent weeks, however, following up a stunning 2-1 victory against Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium with a 2-1 win over Burnley at Vicarage Road last weekend.

However, the loss of Pereyra has been central to Watford’s gradual slide down the Premier League table.

Options for Mazzarri

Watford manager Walter Mazzarri was very active in the January transfer window to combat the injury to Pereyra.

Mazzarri brought in Tom Cleverley on loan from Everton for a second spell with the Hornets and the former Manchester United midfielder has settled straight into the side.

The additions of Mauro Zarate and M’Baye Niang have given Watford some more attacking options with Zarate playing in an attacking midfield position not too different from the role Pereyra takes. Niang managed to find the net in the recent 2-1 victory over Burnley.