Everton boss Rafa Benitez has provided a positive update on left-back Lucas Dignes’ condition, suggesting the Frenchman is “training well” on his way to recovery.
The 27-year-old suffered a thigh muscle injury during France’s miserable Euro 2020 campaign. National team coach Didier Deschamps described the injury as “very complicated”, which led to fears that the defender could miss the start of the new season.
Digne suffered injury in international service / Laszlo Balogh – Pool / Getty Images
But Benitez offered some encouraging updates on Dignes’ condition following Everton’s 1-0 win over Blackburn on Saturday, saying the Frenchman is “training well” and will return to help his team-mates “as soon as possible.”
“I had contact with him [on Wednesday morning], he trains well, does his job and is ready to join the team as soon as possible, says the Everton boss.
“He is a great professional and I know he works hard.
“My message exchange with him has been good because he says he’s almost ready.”
Digne is a crucial figure in the Everton team, and supporters hope to see him back in the starting line-up at the start of the new season. He played 30 times in the Premier League last year and only missed a handful of matches with an ankle injury during the Christmas period.
Another key figure who misses Everton’s pre-season is Richarlison, who has traveled to Tokyo for the 2020 Olympics. Benitez said he has spoken to the Brazilian and hopes the freight forwarder will pay the club back next season for allowing him to take part in the competition.
“I was in contact with him, he had the Olympics in the back of his mind, we needed to sort out his situation and he is fine,” said Benitez.
Richarlison returns after the Olympics / CARL DE SOUZA / Getty Images
“He’s happy he can go there … and he knows he has to give us something back because we supported him.
“That [not being involved at start of season] may be something we may not consider good at first but will be a huge boost for us for the rest of the season as he will try to deliver. ”