Bad news from Rafa Benitez today that Slimani has still not fully recovered from that thigh injury he had when he signed the loan deal with Newcastle on January 31st.
The disaster scenario is the injury will drag on and not clear up for some weeks, and he will miss even more vital games for Newcastle.
After two weeks without a game, we were hoping he would be fully fit but warned on Wednesday that may not be the case.
Rafa said he will be out at least two more weeks, so he’s in danger of missing as many as four more games before he’s fit.
Islam Slimani – may be available for only six games
Here are the next seven games.
Date Fixture KO time
Sat 24 Feb Bournemouth vs Newcastle 15:00 Sat 3 Mar Liverpool vs Newcastle 17:30 Sat 10 Mar Newcastle vs Southampton 15:00 Fri 16 Mar Tottenham vs Newcastle 16:00 Sat 31 Mar Newcastle vs Huddersfield 15:00 Sat 7 Apr Leicester vs Newcastle 15:00 Sat 14 Apr Newcastle vs Arsenal 15:00
He could possibly make the game in three weeks at Tottenham and maybe the home game against Huddersfield but misses the game at Leicester, which he cannot play in.
This is not good news because once an injury is almost healed but is injured again, it becomes very dodgy as to when that injury will fully heal.
Hate to be too negative but time is of the essence with injuries.
Islam should at least be fit by the end of March after the two-week International break, which is five weeks from now.
And there are then six games he can play for us if he makes the Huddersfield game.
It’s hardly good news, but we’ll just have to hope for the best, and it does give some of our other strikers a chance to score those goals for us – and be heroes.
And it’s almost certain that Rafa will now play an unchanged side tomorrow at Dean Court against Bournemouth.