A host of Tottenham Hotspur players will be joining up with their international teammates here in the next little while for a series of friendlies and World Cup warm-up matches now that club football is finished in most leagues. But Victor Wanyama won’t be one of them.
ESPN is reporting that Spurs have denied the Kenyan FA from calling up Big Vic for two upcoming international friendlies against Swaziland and Equatorial Guinea.
“Tottenham has written to us making it clear that Wanyama needs rest so that he recovers fully from the injury [he picked up] while featuring for the club,” Barry Otieno, the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) head of communications, told KweséESPN.
“We had written to Tottenham requesting that Wanyama be allowed to feature for the national team since he had been off for long because of injury. But the club replied on Wednesday and we shall miss our inspirational captain,” Otieno added.
So, this is probably for the best. Wanyama is coming off of an injury blighted season that saw him miss nearly five months of action. When he did return, it was hinted that he played the final 2-3 games through another minor injury because of the midfield crisis Spurs were in at that point. Sending him off to play for Kenya in what appears to be two pretty meaningless friendly matches seems risky. Dude needs a break.
I’m sure Wanyama is proud to be the captain of his national team and loves playing for Kenya, and I would never think to say that this was his idea. That said, I can totally see a scenario where the club came to him and said “Wanna go play for Kenya?” and Vic said “LOL no it’s rest time and I’m still kinda hurt” and the club said “Okie-doke.”
I fully expect to see Vic back with Kenya in the near-to-medium future, but keeping him in London (and more importantly, healthy) seems like the right play for now.