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Lorenzo Insigne hopes to return by March

Lorenzo Insigne's recovery from reconstructive knee surgery is going well, and he's hopeful that he can return well ahead of schedule.

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The loss of Lorenzo Insigne to an ACL tear was a huge blow to Napoli. The diminutive attacker had a shaky start to the season, but was rounding in to tremendous form when he went down clutching his knee against Fiorentina in November. Worse for him, he had made it back in to the Italian National team squad before being felled by the injury.

That injury was believed to be season-ending, putting Napoli in a depth bind on the wings and serving as a major part of what prompted them to buy Manolo Gabbiadini. After an encouragingly fast recovery, though, Insigne is hopeful to be back this season:

"I’m better day by day, but I have to stay calm. The important thing is that when I return to being available for selection there are no more problems.

"I think I can be ready by February or March."

Source: Football Italia

Of course, what a player thinks and what team doctors think may be wildly different. Still, there have been good signs; he recently did some work with a ball in training and looked surprisingly fluid doing it. It's still a long road to go from that to being strong enough and ready enough to play, but it's a start, and it's a very good one.

Hopefully he can be a part of the team in some form this season, but worst-case, a recovery this strong will leave him with much less work to do next season to get adjusted and back to his best ability to play. Everything about this is great news for Napoli.