Newcastle United star ruled out for rest of season in boost to Manchester United & West Ham

Newcastle United midfielder Joe Willock. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)Newcastle United midfielder Joe Willock. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
Newcastle United midfielder Joe Willock. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
Newcastle United will be without the midfielder for their Premier League run-in as they battle the likes of West Ham United and Manchester United for European qualification.

Newcastle United midfielder Joe Willock has been ruled out for the rest of the campaign.

The former Arsenal man has twice been sidelined with an Achilles injury this season and recently withdrew from the 1-0 win at Fulham with the same issue.

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He missed Saturday’s 4-0 win over Tottenham Hotspur. And rather than return for the Magpies’ Premier League run-in, the decision has been taken to allow him to rest the injury, as first reported by the Daily Mail.

Newcastle United midfield pair Bruno Guimaraes and Joe Willock. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)Newcastle United midfield pair Bruno Guimaraes and Joe Willock. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
Newcastle United midfield pair Bruno Guimaraes and Joe Willock. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Explaining the situation on Friday, United boss Eddie Howe said: “Joe has been to see another specialist to check on the progress of his Achilles, which has been problematic for him. It has been a difficult injury because it’s not been straightforward, he’s had complications through the progress of him returning back to full fitness.

“His feedback was positive generally in that the respect that the Achilles is healing and doing well but it will fluctuate from time to time and have moments where he is not feeling so good.

“For Tottenham, I’m not sure, I probably think he won’t be available for us. There’s a chance he’ll be available then throughout the rest of the season but again that is slightly unclear.

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“We need to make sure the long-term prognosis for him is positive so that might mean a short period of rest.”

Willock has been restricted to just 14 appearances this term. Since returning in late February, the 24-year-old struggled to reach his best form but will now focus on hitting the ground running next season.

Elliot Anderson is set to continue in Willock’s absence following his impressive display against Spurs on Saturday.

“Today, we saw hopefully the emergence of Elliot Anderson to what we all thought for a long time, that he's an outstanding player and that he will be a very good player for us, not just short-term but long-term,” said Howe. “Elliot brings his unique version of ball winning, duels but I wouldn’t say he is sort of a natural like Joelinton is, I think that is just more through his passion and endeavour.

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“But what he can bring is a totally different thing technically and his delivery around the box, I think we’ll see that steadily improve through time.

“I think he will be a goalscorer and goal creator for us, we’ve seen that in training for a long period of time. I can’t speak highly enough of how he has come back from his injury, I think he’s in a really good place.”

Newcastle currently sit sixth in the Premier League as they battle the likes of Manchester United, West Ham United and Chelsea for European qualification.

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