Mousa Dembele hasn’t been seen since he supposedly tweaked his hamstring in Spurs’ win over Sunderland a few weeks ago. He didn’t make the trip to Moscow, and he wasn’t in the match-day squad against Manchester City.
Now, it appears he won’t be playing for Belgium this week either. Belgian football journo Kristoff Terreur tweeted that, while he was called up to the squad by Roberto Martinez (along with Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen), he won’t play due to an ankle injury.
Wait, what? Ankle injury? When Moose limped off against Sunderland, the club came out right away and said that he had some issues with “cramping” but that it wasn’t anything to really worry about. But now we haven’t seen him for going on two weeks and Kristoff is talking about an ankle injury?
So what’s going on here? Well, maybe a couple of things.
The club lied.
This might be the Occam’s Razor explanation. We already know that Tottenham is super secretive when it comes to injury information except for big ones to big stars, like what happened to Harry Kane. It’s not at all shocking to suggest that Pochettino wasn’t truthful when discussing Dembele’s initial injury and it was more serious than what we though. Or maybe he picked up a second injury in training. But that doesn’t explain why Belgium called him up, or why Moose would report in the first place.
Moose picked up another injury, perhaps stupidly.
So maybe Moose is fine and goes to Belgium to train, but he twists his ankle walking down the stairs while getting off the plane. Maybe something happened while warming up. Maybe he felt something go while doing the Stanky Legg with the Lukaku brothers in the locker room. Who knows? But it might explain why he went to Belgium and then won’t play.
It’s the Belgian Flu.
Mousa only just got back from injury. Maybe he’s feeling fine enough to report for national team duty, but didn’t want to risk his health in two stupid games against Bosnia and Gibraltar, so ow gaffer my ankle hurts I can’t go. But again, that could be done at the club level instead of actually going to Belgium.
It’s weird, but the end result is Dembele won’t be playing either of Belgium’s World Cup qualifiers. Whether he’s injured and can’t, or just doesn’t want to, I’m ultimately okay with it, so long as he gets healthy in time to play a key role in Spurs’ Premier League title campaign.