Belgian national team boss Roberto Martinez expects injury prone defender Thomas Vermaelen to play a key role for Roma this season.
Vermaelen’s career has been hit hard by injuries over the last five years. When he moved at Arsenal as a highly talented player from Ajax back in 2009, Vermaelen was regarded as one of the best centre backs in the world. He became so influential in the Arsenal team that he was even made is the captain of the gunners just a few years after his arrival. However, things became especially poor for the player when he suffered his first major injury in the 2010-11 campaign.
An Achilles tendon injury was blamed as the reason for the player managing only five appearances throughout the campaign. However, not many expected that this poor injury record to continue since the player had never encountered such a major problem previously in his career. It turned out to be a recurring issue with Vermaelen only managing 21 appearances in all competitions in his final season at the club.
A move to Barcelona in the 2013-14 season was expected to rediscover his form, but his injury record has gone from bad to worse. After making only one appearance in his two seasons with the Catalan club, he has joined Roma this season.
“Vermaelen? I hope that his physical problems are now a thing of the past. He will definitely make an important contribution to Roma.He has great experience, having played at Ajax, for Arsenal and at Barcelona,” said Martinez, who recently was announced as the new manager of Belgium. He has managed several Belgian players in the past with the most prominent being Lukaku. Now, though, he has to adjust to playing a couple of games every few months as the national team manager.