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Schevchenko ready to play Milan match against Lazio
Updated: 2005-02-05 10:22

European Footballer of the Year Andriy Shevchenko says he feels well enough to return from injury much earlier than expected.

Sheva did not play in AC Milan's 1-4 defeat of Messina on Wednesday and was expected to also miss AC Milan's next two league matches against Lazio and Reggina.

Doctors had said it would take a fortnight for the Ukraine starto recover from a bruised shin and sprained ankle he got from a lunging tackle in a January 30 shock 0-1 defeat by Bologna.

But he said today that it was still a bit sore but he could runon it and he was determined to play against Lazio.

The Messina win helped Milan bounce back into contention after the Bologna game, a second straight loss that left them eight points adrift of top flight leaders Juve, who lost to Sampdoria onSunday and the gap is now five points.

The Ukraine star, first division league's top scorer last year,is also looking forward to February 23's Champions League quarter-final first leg against Manchester United.

His initial medical report had raised doubts about his recovering in time for that, while this news also means Sheva will play Ukraine's World Cup qualifier in Albania on February 9.

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