Thompson A Fortnight Away

Melbourne Heart FC midfielder Matt Thompson remains at least a fortnight away from returning to Hyundai A-League action.

Melbourne Heart FC midfielder Matt Thompson remains at least a fortnight away from returning to Hyundai A-League action.

Despite making significant progress in his recovery from a sprained knee, commencing straight line running late last week, Heart-s medical staff is likely to take a cautious approach with Thompson to avoid further jeopardising his participation in the side-s run to the finals.

The 29-year old has been a contender for Heart-s Player of the Season, producing a series of influential displays across the park to drive the Red and White-s charge towards a finals appearance.

Thompson has been earmarked to make his return when Heart hosts the Central Coast Mariners on February 26, a potentially timely boost for the side ahead of its match-up with the league leaders.

His absence however has been tempered somewhat by the revelation Heart captain Fred is in contention to re-enter the fray as early as this weekend.

Fred has trained strongly in recent days to mount a compelling case for his inclusion in Heart-s travelling party to Newcastle on Friday.

However, whether the Brazilian is able to persuade head coach John van ‘t Schip remains to be seen, with the Dutchman vacillating over offering the 32-year old an additional week-s rest before recalling him for Heart-s match-up with Gold Coast United on February 17.

Meanwhile, youngster Kliment Taseski is poised to make his first competitive appearance in four months during Heart Youth-s clash with Adelaide United at John Cain Reserve on Sunday.

Taseski was sidelined after fracturing his foot during a friendly hit out in October, curtailing his bid to figure prominently in van ‘t Schip-s first team plans.

Another member of the long term injury list is poised to reach a milestone next week when Nick Kalmar becomes available for selection after overcoming a back problem.

The breakout star of Heart-s debut Hyundai A-League season, Kalmar featured in the opening two matches of this campaign before succumbing to injury, temporarily curtailing his ambitions for 2011/12.