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Townsend World Cup dreams dashed
England winger Andros Townsend has been ruled out of the World Cup after Tottenham announced he must undergo ankle surgery.
Townsend will be sidelined for 10 weeks and is to undergo the procedure to the joint on his left leg on Thursday.
"Following further examination and consultation, Andros Townsend is to undergo surgery on his left ankle after damaging ligaments during our fixture against Stoke City last Saturday," a club statement read.
"The injury is likely to sideline the young winger for up to 10 weeks."
Townsend sustained the injury after coming on 12 minutes from time in Saturday's 1-0 Barclays Premier League win at Stoke.
The 22-year-old left the Britannia Stadium in a protective boot and underwent an MRI scan on Monday and was assessed further on Tuesday.
The Spurs academy graduate has made 33 appearances in total this term and impressed on loan at QPR at the back end of last season.
Townsend exploded onto the international stage in October, netting on his England debut against Montenegro before helping overcome Poland as Roy Hodgson's men secured a place in Brazil.
However, he has not enjoyed the best end to the campaign and last started a Premier League match in the 1-0 defeat to Arsenal on March 16.
That lack of game time affected his World Cup hopes and after this latest injury update, it is guaranteed he will not be among the names when Hodgson picks his World Cup squad on May 12.
Sherwood sympathised with Townsend, telling Sky Sports News: "I don't expect people to be pleased to be left out but he gives everything in training to make himself better.
"This is a major setback for him - he's going to have to wait another four years to play in a World Cup, that's a negative. But he has nothing to worry about.
"He will improve himself, he's singleminded and determined to get every single bit of ability out of himself to be the best he can.
"I've had him since he's been a baby and he's a credit to the academy. He's difficult at times - he's a character, not a soldier, who sometimes needs managing. Sometimes all the best players do."
On his own situation, Sherwood said: "I'm just carrying on as I'd normally do... I just get on with it.
"When clubs come out - and managers too - it's disappointing. Somewhere along the line someone is telling porkies.
"We'll see where the discussions at the end of the season take us. It's a difficult time when there are outside distractions but I have to concentrate on the job in hand.
"My office is on the field. I think it's gone reasonably well for me in the Premier League but we'll just have to wait and see."