Newcastle United set for £98m double injury boost after international break - Chelsea up first

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The Newcastle United duo are on course to return after the international break.

Newcastle United are hopeful of receiving a double injury boost after the international break.

Among the Magpies' growing list of absentees is £98million duo Harvey Barnes and Alexander Isak. Barnes has been sidelined since sustaining a toe injury during the 8-0 win at Sheffield United in September, while Isak hasn't played since Borussia Dortmund on October 25 because of a recurring thigh problem.

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Newcastle pause for the two-week international break after this evening's Premier League clash at AFC Bournemouth. And when they return to action in the first game back at home to Chelsea, £60m club-record Isak is expected to be available.

Newcastle United striker Alexander Isak. (Photo by George Wood/Getty Images)Newcastle United striker Alexander Isak. (Photo by George Wood/Getty Images)
Newcastle United striker Alexander Isak. (Photo by George Wood/Getty Images) | Getty Images

"Alex is doing well and in the throws of building up his load, making sure he’s robust enough to return and working on his fitness level," Howe told reporters. "I think his groin, at the moment, touch wood, feels good. He’s on plan to return after the international break."

Barnes was initially ruled out until late December but his rapid progress means the winger is closing in on a return. The £38m summer signing won't be fit for Chelsea but according to Howe, "it won't be too far after".

He said: "I think he’s just started running. He had to let his bone heal in his toe. Fingers crossed he’s on the right path. He’s probably one who won’t be too far away after the international break.”

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Despite the positive news, Howe remains without Sandro Tonali (banned), Jacob Murphy (shoulder), Dan Burn (back), Elliot Anderson (back), Sven Botman (knee), Matt Targett (hamstring) and Javier Manquillo (groin) for the foreseeable future.

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