Newcastle United injury bombshell after key man returns ahead of schedule

The Newcastle United defender returned to action ahead of schedule after playing through the pain barrier.

Newcastle United stand-in skipper Dan Burn has opened up on the criticism he faced whilst overcoming a back injury.

The Blyth-born defender effectively broke his back during the 1-0 win over Arsenal on November 4 and was due to be out for a minimum of two months. Burn, however, returned within six weeks as injuries decimated the Magpies’ squad.

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With the absentee list reaching double figures, Burn’s comeback coincided with United’s dip in form and his role at left-back began to be scrutinised. But the 31-year-old has came through that tough period with his recent move back into the centre of defence bringing out the best in him.

Newcastle United stand-in captain Dan Burn. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)Newcastle United stand-in captain Dan Burn. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
Newcastle United stand-in captain Dan Burn. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Reflecting on the criticism, Burn told beIN Sports: “It is tough because people only see what they see on a Saturday. They don’t see the work that gets put in during the week and what people put into it to be ready to play, they just see the final product.

“If you don’t perform to a level that people expect then yeah, you’re always under criticism but at the end of the day, I put myself into that position. If I didn’t feel I was ready then that was my call to make.

“I went through a spell where I had a few bad games, admittedly against very fast players! I’d still back myself against those players but it was just one of those things that every time I seemed to make a mistake, we conceded a big chance or a goal. That’s the way it goes sometimes, it creates a narrative that people get on.”

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Since returning as a substitute during the Champions League exit to AC Milan, Burn, who is currently captaining the side in Jamaal Lascelles and Kieran Trippier’s absence has failed to start just once. He hasn’t had much rest in that time but the former Brighton and Hove Albion man insists he feels “really good”.

Burn said: “I’m good. I think it took a little while to get going again. I said before, I probably came back a little earlier than I should have. It was just something that had to be done.

“[I returned in] just under six weeks, I think, but I felt good. I wouldn’t have pushed myself through it if I didn’t think I could but I’ll not be the only person that has done that for Newcastle this season. “I think a lot of the lads have had to do that this season, Longy [Sean Longstaff] playing through injury. It did a little while to get the rhythm going again but I feel really good.”

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