Ritchie Close To First Team Return

Last updated : 10 November 2013 By Bournemouth Co-Ordinator

Having picked up a knock against FC Zurich in a pre-season friendly Matt Ritchie has not participated in any first team action so far in the current campaign. But it is now being reported that Ritchie could be on the verge of a return to action in time for the next home match against Derby County on November 23rd.

Speaking on BBC Radio Solent, Howe is quoted as saying, before the match at Burnley match on a possible return: "Matt went to Italy twice in the past couple of weeks. His injury has totally healed so he has no injury as such any more. He now needs to build up his fitness. If you think we have a six-week pre-season to get players from a base of no fitness to full fitness, he is now in the middle of that process. It is not going to take him six weeks as we have to fast-track it but I imagine it's going to take him two weeks from this period to get back to match fitness. Burnley might be a push for him but if we can get him back after the international break it will be like signing a new player".