Everton medical director says James Rodriguez would be fit for Copa America
Everton medical director Danny Donachie says there’s no reason James Rodriguez couldn’t have played for Colombia at the Copa America.
A club-versus-country disagreement has emerged with the playmaker’s national team manager Reinaldo Rueda dropping him for the next tournament over concerns over his recovery from a calf injury.
At a press conference in Colombia, Rueda said the decision was made after assessing his medical report which included information provided by Everton.
However, Donachie said the 29-year-old left Merseyside last weekend with the recommendation not to make the World Cup qualifiers against Peru and Argentina in order to be fit for the Copa. America.
“It was a very small injury at the end of the season and we had no problem with James joining Colombia,” Donachie told evertonfc.com.
“He was hoping to play in both qualifiers and the only discussion we had with the Colombian federation was whether it was a good idea or if it would be safer to prepare him for the tournament.
“We agreed that he would be in great shape, without any questions, for the start of the Copa America.
“We talked about his rehab and they agreed to continue the process, but there was no doubt in our mind that he would be in great shape in time for the tournament.
“I have seen the tests carried out by Colombia and there is nothing to say that he will not be in good shape for this competition.
“We follow each player individually and have information on every element of their physical condition and performance.
“And, as far as that particular injury goes, there wouldn’t have been any long-term risk of him playing the Copa America.”
However, Rueda insisted that was not the case.
“Prior to the Federation’s statement, I met James by phone for the results of the exams and to review the information exchanged by the Colombian national team doctor and Everton regarding James’ present,” he said. .
“This is why I told James that I had made the decision to withdraw him from the selection to recover accordingly so that he can enjoy a full preseason with his club and that we can have it in the next teams. “
The bright spot for Everton is that the player, who has made just 26 appearances and played only once in the last six games of the campaign due to injury, will return to pre-training. season earlier than expected on July 5th.