Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Santon Ruled out for Up to a Month

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Santon Ruled out for Up to a Month

Article excerpt

Byline: Mark Duoglas

NEWCASTLE United new boy Davide Santon faces an operation and "at least" a month on the sidelines after cartilage damage was discovered in his troublesome right knee.

In a hammer blow for boss Alan Pardew the left-back reported pain after taking part in a full training session on Thursday morning and was sent for a scan. That confirmed cartilage damage and he will now undergo keyhole surgery which will see his United debut delayed until at least the end of October.

Realistically it could be even longer, with Newcastle determined to take a cautious approach to the Italy defender's fitness now that a long-standing injury has flared up.

Pardew admitted the problem was a "worry", but anticipating criticism of United's decision to push through the pounds 5million move from Inter Milan, he said nothing untoward had been discovered in a very thorough medical.

Newcastle must now face a tricky programme of fixtures with no recognised, specialist senior left-back. Ryan Taylor has proved an able deputy in the meantime, but he struggled against the pace and poise of Shaun Wright-Phillips on Monday night, and supporters will be anxious about this fresh blow to a player with a history of fitness problems.

"It's a worry because it looks like it could be a cartilage, not the most serious type of injury but not something you want when he has just come into the building," Pardew said.

"Maybe we are looking at a month out. He is going to have to get it cleaned out and then it is keyhole surgery nowadays which is a quicker operation, but it will certainly mean at least four weeks out. "I''m not actually sure of the mechanics of how it occurred. He trained on Thursday and trained very, very well. But it's very important he has a good start at this football club, so we want to make sure he's 100%. …

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