Belfast Telegraph

Friday 28 November 2014

Sturridge's Olympics dream alive

Daniel Sturridge is confident he will be fit to take part in the Olympics
Daniel Sturridge is confident he will be fit to take part in the Olympics

Daniel Sturridge remains hopeful he will be able to play for Great Britain's football team at the London Olympics after undergoing hospital tests for suspected viral meningitis.

The 22-year-old forward fell ill over the weekend with what is typically considered a mild strain of the disease. Sturridge feels confident he can recover in time to take some part in the Games.

In a statement, the England international said: "The Chelsea medical team have been closely monitoring everything and they and the doctors and nurses at St Mary's Hospital have been outstanding throughout. Thankfully, I am starting to feel a lot better and I am optimistic about being able to make the Olympics."

He added: "I am fortunate to have received many wishes of support and I want to thank everybody who has sent messages, it is much appreciated."

Stuart Pearce's 18-man GB squad is set to meet in Loughborough next weekend and the manager has until July 25 to select a replacement should Sturridge be forced to withdraw. Scotland and Huddersfield striker Jordan Rhodes is understood to be among the names on the standby list.

Blues boss Roberto di Matteo also preferred to be positive about the striker's recovery. Speaking at his club's Cobham training complex, the newly appointed Chelsea manager said: "Daniel has viral meningitis, but I spoke to him and he feels better now.

"We are going to follow his situation and hopefully he will get well as soon as possible and be able to join Olympics squad. He is currently still in hospital but I am optimistic he will recover (in time to play).

"I think it's a question of daily monitoring his health, that's what matters most to him, his family and ourselves. We have had a doctor with him since day one and we are being updated on hourly basis.

"We will see and make a decision with the doctors and if he can join."

Di Matteo added: "It is difficult to give a time limit today and we will have to monitor it on a daily basis. But the fact that he is feeling better is very positive and I am optimistic he will recover."

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