Barça’s Putellas in Spain squad two months post knee surgery

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Alexia Putellas has been surprisingly included in Spain‘s squad for the upcoming UEFA Women’s Nations League.

The 2023 World Cup winners take on the Netherlands in the semifinal of the competition on Feb. 23 in Seville.

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Barcelona Femení captain and two-time Ballon d’Or winner Putellas has not played since Nov. 14 when she sustained a left knee injury while playing with her club.

The Spain forward underwent arthroscopic surgery on that knee on Dec. 27 and has yet to resume full training with Barça.

Spain coach Montse Tome explained her decision to include Putellas in her 25-player squad.

“Alexia is very important, she is the captain and from a sporting point of view we consider that she has to be in these games,” Tomé said in Thursday’s news conference.

“We know that she is in a recovery process and that she continues to be very careful. We are confident that she can be there but we will monitor it very carefully. We are in touch with her on a daily basis and she has a good feeling about it [her recovery].”

Putellas, 30, missed the 2022 European Championship due to an anterior cruciate ligament injury but was part of Spain’s victorious World Cup squad last year.

She is one of eight Barcelona players in Tomé’s squad, that also includes Tigres midfielder Jenni Hermoso.

Uncapped Barcelona teenage midfielder Vicky López was also named in the roster.

López, 17, won the Under-17 World Cup with Spain in 2022.

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