Lawrence upbeat after ankle op
Stoke City midfielder Liam Lawrence has successfully undergone surgery on his troublesome ankle injury.
Last season's player of the year suffered the injury when he tripped over his dog on the stairs at home and has not featured for Tony Pulis' side since the home game against Chelsea at the end of September.
Lawrence had the operation on Tuesday and is champing at the bit to return to action.
"It all went well and I am really pleased," the 26-year-old told Stoke's official website.
"I have had a few scans trying to find out what was wrong with it. The ankle was improving and there was nothing to worry about on the scans but despite the improvement it was still bothering me.
"We decided to operate just to make sure there was nothing else going on. In the exploratory operation the surgeon found a tear in the ligament that was catching and causing the pain.
"The specialist has repaired the problem and is very positive that I will make a full recovery. I will be seeing the physio at the end of the week.
"I am itching to get back out there and I will hopefully be back out at the training ground getting fit very soon.
"Obviously, you don't know how long it will take; it may be longer, it may be sooner, but I can't wait to get back playing."
Lawrence missed his former club Sunderland's visit to the Britannia Stadium on Wednesday night.
Ricardo Fuller's second-half header gave Stoke a 1-0 victory and lifted the Potters out of the Premier League bottom three.
It was a deserved win for Pulis' side, who created the better chances and always looked the team most likely to break the deadlock.
Sunderland boss Roy Keane concurred and refuted suggestions his team suffered a hangover from their momentous victory over rivals Newcastle in the Wear-Tyne derby on Saturday.
"It does happen in football but I don't think we had a hangover. That is not what happened," said Keane. "The better team on the night won - no excuses.
"The Newcastle game was history. That was Saturday and this was Wednesday night, it was not as if it was a Sunday-Tuesday game where you just have two days to recover. We had plenty of time to recover in terms of physically being ready and mentally being ready.
"We lost the game because we didn't get going. Our passing was the most disappointing thing.
"Maybe I should have made more changes and freshened it up a bit more on the back of Saturday because we had had a couple of tough games before that. But I can't change it now.
"I can't make excuses about Newcastle, that would be very wrong of me. This was a game that we wanted to do well in on our own merits and the last game was history.
"But we never performed and if you don't perform you deserve nothing. No excuses."