Injured Kaoru Mitoma expects to recover in time for World Cup

Kaoru Mitoma of Brighton and Hove Albion during the Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Brighton & Hove Albion at Anfield on October 1, 2022 in Liverpool, United Kingdom.

Brighton & Hove Albion winger Kaoru Mitoma said Tuesday his trainer expects him to recover from a right ankle injury in time to play for Japan at the World Cup in Qatar.

“My trainer said I can get back in time,” said Mitoma, who has missed his Premier League club’s last two matches after sustaining the injury on Oct. 14 against Brentford. “Now I’m only thinking about how quickly I can recover.”

Mitoma is training separately from teammates and does not know if he will be able to play in Saturday’s match against Chelsea, an important fixture given the fast-starting Brighton has lost three of its past four games.

The World Cup will begin on Nov. 20, and Japan will play its first match three days later against 2014 champion Germany. The Samurai Blue squad for the World Cup will be announced by head coach Hajime Moriyasu on Nov. 1.

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