Matt Ritchie setback means he is one of five already ruled out for Manchester United game – Report
Matt Ritchie missed Sunday’s embarrassing display and result at Leicester City.
The winger/wing-back still not back from the injury suffered thanks to the shocking challenge from Hamza Choudhury, in the League Cup defeat to Leicester five weeks ago.
Newcastle fans not impressed when Isaac Hayden was red carded on Sunday against the same opponents, for what many supporters thought was a tackle no worse than Choudhury’s.
Tuesday brought news that The FA had considered adding extra games onto Hayden’s three match ban due to comments the midfielder made as he left the pitch on Sunday but a small positive that they decided not to. However, it still means Hayden won’t be available until 2 November for the away game at West Ham.
Bad news on Wednesday morning though, as The Star have revealed that due to a setback in training, Matt Ritchie is set to be missing as well against Manchester United.
The estimate was two months for Ritchie to be out and whilst Steve Bruce claimed after two weeks the winger could shortly be back due to a miracle recovery, that always sounded widely optimistic.
So the former Bournemouth player will indeed be out at least eight weeks as with the international break, Chelsea away on Saturday 19 October will be the very earliest we will see him again. Newcastle have picked up a fortunate two points from 12 in his absence and conceded nine goals.
The newspaper report says that Jonjo Shelvey isn’t making the progress necessary to be involved on Sunday either, meaning he won’t be back until after the international break as well.
Florian Lejeune and Dwight Gayle are also still some way off a return, which means when you factor in Isaac Hayden’s ban, at least five players are already unavailable for Man Utd on Sunday.
Sean Longstaff and Ki Sung-yeung look the only possibilities for central midfield, with Matty Longstaff set for another appearance on the bench as cover.
The Star report:
‘The versatile Ritchie has been missing since sustaining ankle damage in what Toon chief Steve Bruce described as a horror tackle by Leicester’s Hamza Choudhury during the Magpies’ Carabao Cup KO in late-August.
Ritchie was on the road to recovery but suffered a setback in training a fortnight ago and so this weekend’s game will come too early for him.
The Scotland international regularly tops Newcastle’s distance stats and his industry has been sorely missed, none more so than in the 5-0 hammering at the hands of Brendan Rodgers’ team.
But Bruce is now resigned to being without Ritchie again, leaving him with mounting problems in the middle of the park.’
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