Heung min-Son: Tottenham star to undergo surgery in next 48 hours with World Cup dreams hanging in balance

 (AP)
(AP)

Tottenham’s Heung-min Son is set to have surgery in the next 48 hours, once the swelling around his eye socket has subsided, with the South Korea forward's World Cup dream dependent on his recovery.

Spurs last night confirmed that Son would go under the knife to stabilise a fracture around his left eye, sustained in Tuesday's win over Marseille in the Champions League.

Son is all but certain to miss Sunday's visit of Liverpool in the Premier League but his chances of playing for Spurs against Nottingham Forest or Leeds next week, as well as for his country in Qatar, depend on the success of the surgery, Son's reaction and how quickly he is comfortable playing in a protective mask.

He had to be helped off the pitch at the Stade Velodrome after an ugly clash with Chancel Mbemba but felt well enough to join in his side's celebrations in the dressing room, as Spurs booked a place in the Champions League knockouts.

Son is South Korea's captain and a national icon, with the country now facing an anxious wait to discover if he will be fit to feature in the World Cup.

Injury blow: Heung-min Son will undergo surgery on a facial fracture suffered in Marseille (AP)
Injury blow: Heung-min Son will undergo surgery on a facial fracture suffered in Marseille (AP)

Such is Son's importance to the team and status in his homeland, he would likely be included in the squad even if his participation in the opening matches remained in doubt, with South Korea's first game against Uruguay on November 24. They also face Ghana and Portugal in a tricky group.

Manchester City playmaker Kevin De Bruyne broke his nose and eye socket in the 2021 Champions League final but played for Belgium in the delayed European Championship 19 days later.

In a brief statement, the Korean FA confirmed that Son’s participation in the World Cup depended on the outcome of his surgery and said they were co-operating with Spurs' medical team.

Son's injury is also a blow for Spurs and Antonio Conte, who is already without key forwards Dejan Kulusevski and Richarlison through injury.