Madrid, July 24 (IANS) Athletic Bilbao defender Yeray Alvarez gave his club and team-mates a massive morale boost on Monday when he returned to the club’s Lezama training ground just over a month after beginning cancer treatment.
The 22-year-old central defender has been receiving chemotherapy since June 13 after he was diagnosed with a relapse of the testicular cancer he was originally diagnosed with on December 23 last year, reports Xinhua news agency.
Yeray underwent an operation on December 27th and was back playing again within two months; however, the relapse was discovered as he was preparing to play with the Spain national side in the European Under-21 Championships in Poland.
The highly rated defender was on Saturday named in Athletic’s 24-man squad to participate in this season’s Europa League, highlighting the club’s optimism that he will make a full recovery, even though he is thought to be around six weeks away from being able to return to action.
Monday saw Yeray run for a continuous half hour at the Basque side’s training ground with physiotherapist Xabi Clemente, as well as carrying out some work with and without the ball.
Athletic will be the first Spanish club to play a competitive game this season when they face Dinamo Bucharest in a Europa League qualifying game in Rumania on Thursday.