LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 02: Bryan Ruiz of Fulham is challenged by Alex Song of Arsenal during the Barclays Premier League match between Fulham and Arsenal at Craven Cottage on January 2, 2012 in London, England. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)
After the joy of an excellent away win at Bolton, the win was tainted with the news that Bryan Ruiz had broken his metatarsal in the 2nd half, just as he was really starting to make his mark in a white shirt.
It had been a tough debut for Ruiz last season against the physicality of Blackburn and he was substituted after 45 minutes and then didn't start a game again for some time. Although frustrating that our big summer player wasn't starting, in hindsight it was the right thing to do to prepare him for the faster pace and strength he would face in the English game.
Up until the injury, there were voices of discontent about him being a lightweight and not built for the premier league and that people expected more from him. Before his injury, he scored 2 goals and created 3 assists in his 26 games and he'd actually covered more ground than other players during some of those games. It was hard for him during that time as he had to contend playing in a new country, in a tough league and in a new position on the right wing.
I think next season though, we will see a player who has adjusted to all the physical demands of the league, the faster pace and I hope he will be played in a more central, advanced position where he can postively effect our play. With the muted sales of Dempsey and possibly Demebele, I think Ruiz can take the step up to be a big influence on our play next season. You don't score goals like the below without talent:-
This week, Ruiz was interviewed by Costa Rican news and below is him speaking about his injury and his thanks that Fulham sent Dave Musgrove to assist in his rehabilitation:-
Ruiz also had this to say about the new season at Fulham:-
"My goal for this season is to succeed and do great things in England as I did in Belgium and Holland and I've now had my year to adapt"
Well, here's hoping you succeed Bryan because if you do, I think us Fulham fans are in for a great season ahead.