Steve Bruce issues injury update on Matt Ritchie and Florian Lejeune
Matt Ritchie and Florian Lejeune are pushing to make their comebacks at Newcastle United.
However, Steve Bruce is not minded to involve them in Newcastle United’s home game against Wolverhampton Wanderers on Sunday.
Ritchie returned to training this week after recovering from the ankle injury he suffered in August, while Lejeune is also back on the practice pitch following knee surgery late last season.
Defender Lejeune – who ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament in April – is like to play in a behind-closed-doors friendly before a possible first-team return after next month’s international break, while winger Ritchie will be assessed next week ahead of the November 2 game away to West Ham United.
“Yeah, I think (Sunday will be) too early,” said head coach Steve Bruce.
“The big thing with Flo was it's been a cruciate (ligament), and I would like to see him get something behind closed doors – a game of some sort. I've set a target of maybe after the international break with Flo. He's made great progress.
“Matt Ritchie did a week's intensive course, last week – fitness levels. He's trained for two days, but we mustn’t forget he's been out for two months, as well.
“So, great to see them back in, and in and around it. The weekend, I would think, might be a little too early.”
Meanwhile, striker Andy Carroll is likely to miss the Wolves game after suffering a slight groin injury in last weekend’s 1-0 defeat to Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.