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Ange: Ivan Perisic won’t play for Spurs again

A foregone conclusion, but at least the matter is settled.

Partizan V Crvena Zvezda Basket Match In Belgrade Photo by Srdjan Stevanovic/Getty Images

Just in case you were wondering, Ivan Perisc’s Tottenham Hotspur career is over. The veteran Croatian utility player, signed to be Antonio Conte’s left wing back, is out with a long term ACL injury sustained at the beginning of the season that required surgery. Generally those take about a year to heal fully and return from, and Perisic’s two year contract expires in June. He’s also the subject of speculation that his next move in football is to sign with his hometown club Hajduk Split.

I think everyone assumed that he wouldn’t play for Spurs again this season, but Ange Postecoglou was asked about it in embargoed comments released this morning, and Big Ange basically confirmed it.

“No, he’s working hard to be fair to Ivan. He’s obviously got some national team commitments he wants to get back to as soon as possible.

“Again, he’s been a significant loss for us. I thought this year he was going to be a really significant contributor because of his experience and we saw that in the first few games because of the way he impacted games.

“But yeah, he won’t ... he’s unlikely to play for us again.”

It’s true, all of it. Perisic looked rejuvenated at the beginning of this season, with Big Ange deploying him mostly as a left sided reserve winger. And he looked good! At bare minimum he looked like a steady pair of hands he could slot in at the ends of games who could ping in crosses to Son or Richarlison and who knew how to get forward into space.

But Perisic is 34, and is also one of Tottenham’s highest wage earners. Tottenham was unlikely to offer him a new contract to stick around at that age, and Perisic was unlikely to accept it. So he gets to spend the rest of his Spurs career rehabbing from a serious knee injury while deciding where, or even if, he wants to continue his career next.

Again, none of this is unexpected. But I guess it’s good to have confirmation?