Oxlade-Chamberlain steps up rehab

Andover Advertiser: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is closing in on his return from a knee injury Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is closing in on his return from a knee injury

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain trained alongside his England team-mates on Monday, although the heavy strapping on his knee suggested a return for the do-or-die clash with Uruguay is far from certain.

The 20-year-old midfielder missed the Three Lions' 2-1 defeat to Italy in Manaus on Saturday through injury.

Oxlade-Chamberlain strained a medial ligament in his right knee during England's 2-2 friendly draw against Ecuador on June 4, but his rehabilitation from the problem sustained in Miami is going well.

Having began sprinting again last week, the Arsenal man joined in with his team-mates on Monday at England's Urca military base.

Oxlade-Chamberlain was the last player out on the field in the Rio de Janeiro sunshine and was quickly involved in ball work, albeit a simple dribbling drill.

His right knee was heavily-strapped and after 10 minutes of the part-open session, he went off to do individual work with physio Steve Kemp.

Oxlade-Chamberlain did some passing drills with him, showing no discomfort - an encouraging sign but one which does not necessarily mean Roy Hodgson will have a full complement of players to choose from against Uruguay.

While his side impressed many with their performance against Italy, defeat in Sao Paulo would all but end hopes of progressing to the knockout stages.

Uruguay are in the same position after suffering a shock 3-1 defeat in their opener to Costa Rica.

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