Oman's Al Habsi returns to action in October
The ace goalkeeper, who plays for English club Wigan Athletic that got relegated from the English Premier League (EPL) last season, is on an ‘active recovery path’ and has already begun training in the gym for the past four weeks.
On Monday, Habsi completed two months since his operation in Manchester, London by eminent sports surgeon, Prof Lennard Funk.
During his absence, Habsi missed two of the national team's crucial World Cup final round fixtures, against Iraq and Jordan respectively.
Oman crashed out of the qualifiers after losing to Jordan 0-1 on June 18 in Amman. His sore shoulder also kept him out the FA Cup final, which Wigan won for the first time, after defeating Manchester City 1-0 in May.
Speaking to Muscat Daily, Habsi said, “I am recovering well and am determined to get back to action by October.”
The 32 year old, who has played more than 100 EPL games so far, said, “Eight weeks have passed since my surgery, which is actually the halfway mark. The doctor had advised me not to play for at least four months after my surgery. I am feeling very good now and am happy with my recovery.”
Habsi will travel to London on Tuesday, for his second post-surgery appointment with Prof Funk.
“I had met the surgeon last month and he was satisfied with my progress. Mentally too, I am feeling very strong. It is never easy after any surgery, but I am feeling good now. I have been exercising hard and for the last four weeks I've been training in the gym twice a day. I am following the same routine during the holy month of Ramadan,” said Habsi.
The Omani star also thanked his family, teammates and fans for extending their full support as he recovers.
“My fans across the world have followed me on Facebook and Twitter and wished me a speedy recovery. It means a lot to me and I hope to be back in action,” said Habsi.
On his future with Championship side Wigan after he regains full fitness, Habsi said, “I still have two years of my contract left with Wigan. Last month I met Wigan's new manager [Owen] Coyle and also spent ten days with the club's physiotherapist and trainers.
“In fact, I have played under Coyle at Bolton Wanderers and I am happy that we are together again.”
Habsi made his first move to EPL in January 2006 when the then Bolton manager Sam Allardyce signed a deal with his Norwegian club, Lyn Oslo. Habsi was with Bolton till 2010 when he joined the Latics on loan. However, it was only in the summer of 2011 that Habsi made a permanent US$6.1mn switch to Wigan, a move sanctioned by then Bolton boss Coyle.