Eddie Howe can’t catch a break as the Newcastle manager this season.
Despite continuing to play some of the best football seen at St. James’ Park in many a year, the Magpies have been decimated by injuries to major players throughout the campaign.
The latest to succumb is in-form striker, Alexander Isak, the Swedish hit-man having to leave the field early against Aston Villa at the beginning of the week.
His subsequent diagnosis means that he will be out of action for several weeks but he’s yet to have surgery on the problem.
That’s something that former West Ham striker turned pundit, Frank McAvennie, believes could end up giving Isak lifelong issues unless it’s addressed in the immediate future.
“He’s (Isak) not been at the club for long, but he’s out so often,” he said to Football Insider.
“Knowing football clubs, they’ll probably give him injections to keep him fit for the next few months and then give him an operation in the summer.
“If his injuries are going to keep causing him problems, go and get it done now.
“If he’s back in eight weeks for the final run-in, then that’s what I’d do. Go and get it done.
“It could hurt him in the long run. Do it for the boy’s sake too because it will do him more damage in the long-term.
“You don’t want to be getting injuries like this so young and not get them sorted. He will suffer for the rest of his life.”
If there is a chance at getting Isak back before the end of the current season should he go under the knife now, then Howe would be wise to consider the same.
The last thing that the manager needs is for niggling little injuries to turn into bigger ones, and thus ruling Isak out for a portion of the following season too.
In the meantime, the hope will surely be that no more players succumb to injury and force Howe into picking from an ever decreasing crop of players.