Danny Rose has ended his loan spell at Sunderland and returned to Tottenham to undergo surgery on a wrist injury.
Ineligible to face his parent club on the final day of the season, the 22-year-old made his final contribution in a Sunderland shirt during the 1-1 draw against Southampton on Sunday and will travel back to White Hart Lane to cure an injury that has been troubling him for several months.
"Danny cannot play in the last game because it is against Tottenham and he is not staying with us this week because he needs to have surgery on his wrist," Sunderland manager Paolo Di Canio told the Sunderland Echo. "He is a Tottenham player and they have to treat him - it is not our responsibility.
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"But he has been fantastic for us and as a club we want to thank him for everything he has done. Maybe he will come to the game [at White Hart Lane] though."
A unanimous fan favourite on Wearside, the defender enjoyed a solo lap of honour after the game on Sunday, as fans chanted for Ellis Short to secure Rose on a permanent deal. Under contract with Spurs until 2015, any deal may prove difficult with manager Andre Villas-Boas describing the potential for a transfer as 'impossible' when the two sides last met in December.
Unwilling to confirm his interest in signing Rose until Sunderland's Premier League status was assured, it is believed the Italian would be keen to hold discussions regarding a deal at the end of the season.
"At Tottenham, I don't know how many chances he will have to play," Di Canio said. "I don't know whether he will have the chance to play 38 games there.
"We will have to wait and see what happens. I have not made any decisions over whether we will or will not pursue Danny. I won't make any decisions on transfers until we are safe. I can't look at that side of things until our future is clearer."