Newcastle United striker Alexander Isak is making positive progress in his recovery from a thigh injury, according to an update from fitness expert Ben Dinnery.
The Lowdown: Isak out injured
The Swede was a high-profile signing for the Magpies during the summer transfer window, bringing a huge amount of firepower and potential to the squad.
It does look as though the 23-year-old’s return isn’t too far away, however, following a fresh claim.
The Latest: Positive update emerges
Speaking to Give Me Sport, Dinnery said that Isak was making good progress in his recovery:
“We have every indication at this stage that that’s going to be okay. The difficulty that Newcastle had when they brought Isak in is that he wasn’t 100% fit anyway.
“And circumstances were such, following that injury to Callum Wilson, that he was ultimately thrown right in the deep end, when ideally, again, we talked about this period of adaptation and the player’s acclimatised, particularly to the rigours of the Premier League.
“And he came in and did a great job, I think he got two goals in those three appearances, then went on national team duty and picked up an issue, shall we say, in training with them, and he thought it was just to be a minor concern, two or three weeks out, but he was on the cusp of a first-team return for Newcastle and then suffered that setback.
“So again, you’re back to square one in terms of that process and just easing back the player.”
The Verdict: Post-World Cup brilliance?
It is hugely encouraging to see Isak working his way back to full fitness – Gary Lineker has called him ‘exceptional’ – and he should now be treating the period during the World Cup break as a chance to find his top level again.
He has already scored twice in his first three league matches and there is no reason why he can’t return after the World Cup in the ideal shape to take the Premier League by storm.
Isak will be well-rested by the time the fixtures start up again on Boxing Day and he could end up being Newcastle’s most important player in their top-four push.