Steve Bruce has admitted that he is disappointed by Dwight Gayle’s struggle to return to fitness with the Newcastle United striker still sidelined with an injury he suffered in the summer.
Gayle, 28, was in superb form while on loan at West Brom last season but is yet to feature in a matchday squad since returning to Tyneside.
It would seem as though the ex-Crystal Palace striker is set to spend even longer in the treatment room too as Bruce admits that his calf injury has not shown any signs of improvement.
“Dwight’s a big disappointment for me because I have now been here for seven, eight weeks but this injury has not got any better – which is a big concern to all of us,” said Bruce, as quoted by the Chronicle via their live blog on Tuesday [08:16pm].
It is not a surprise to see Bruce so concerned because while calf injuries are commonplace in football, they are not usually something that keeps players sidelined for as long as Gayle without a return date being set. The 28-year-old must be really struggling to recover from his injury and that could be a massive worry in terms of his career at Newcastle and as a Premier League player. Gayle was banging in goals for fun at West Brom last season, hitting the back of the net 24 times in 41 appearances across all competitions as the Midlands side finished fourth in the Championship standings. Albion reportedly tried to sign Gayle again in the summer but could not convince the striker to re-join them on loan, so it will be interesting to see whether he changes his tone in January. Gayle is down the pecking order due to his injury and with Andy Carroll looking as though he’s going to be fit before the ex-Palace ace, it seems like Gayle’s issues may get even worse.