Tony Pulis drops Massimo Luongo fitness bombshell as Sheffield Wednesday and Socceroos man continues fine form
The ‘lion-hearted’ attitude of Sheffield Wednesday talisman Massimo Luongo has impressed new boss Tony Pulis no end.
That’s according to the Owls manager himself, who speaking after another classy display from the holding midfielder at Swansea revealed the lengths he has gone to in order to get back to action.
Luongo took the field for the first time in over a month for Pulis’ first match as Wednesday boss at Preston last week and has twice been taken off early as a precaution to safeguard a recurring knee injury.
Pulis revealed that the Aussie had recovered from surgery in order to get back to fitness and that in normal circumstances he may still be considered injured.
“Massimo has been absolutely fantastic for us,” Pulis told The Star. “He’s had a cartilage operation and there’s no way he should even be on the pitch really.
“He’s got a heart as big as a lion and he wants to play.”
It’s a fine line to tread with Luongo, who ahead of signing for Wednesday from QPR had not suffered anything like the injuries he has had over the last 18 months.
Pulis already finds himself without the likes of Dominic Iorfa, Aden Flint, Jack Marriott and Chey Dunkley and has a paper-thin squad with Kadeem Harris and Josh Windass also out suspended.
The Welshman has already spoken at length about his desire to transform the injury record at the club and last week also admitted he would be looking into the free agent market for additions he believes would be ‘massive’ for Wednesday’s squad depth.
Operating in front of the back four, Luongo has played a huge role in Pulis’ first two matches in the Wednesday dugout.
Speaking after their defeat at Preston on Saturday, the Owls boss said on his substitution after an hour: “Because it was muscular, we were a little concerned that if we let him play longer than that, then he might trigger something.
“We didn’t want to take that chance but I thought he was smashing, he did really, really well in that spot.
“When the game got stretched, he really, really showed his energy in his legs.”