After 10 weeks out of action, Islam Slimani finally made his return to action during Algeria’s friendly with Iran on Tuesday night – however NUFC fans who tuned in have described him as ‘lacking movement’ and looking ‘severely unfit’.
Now, this may be expected of a player who has been out of action for months and is a positive sign that he’s recovered from his thigh injury, but it’s also an indicator that he won’t be ready for Saturday’s game with Huddersfield?
The 29-year-olds last appearance was in Leicester’s FA Cup win over Fleetwood on January 16th, and although he is still yet to kick a ball in a black and white shirt, he did come off the bench to play 26 minutes for Algeria on Tuesday – the first minutes he’s played since arriving on Tyneside on January 31st.
He was booked within two minutes of entering the pitch and missed a decent chance from his head, however two concerns voiced by Newcastle fans tuning in to watch him was his evident lack of movement and fitness:
— The Mag (@NUFCTheMag) March 27, 2018
— ㅤMagpiesRelated (@MagpiesRelated) March 27, 2018
As you can see above, those from The Mag said he ‘looked unfit’ and was ‘lacking movement’, whilst Twitter page @MagpiesRelated felt he looked ‘severely unfit’.
Whilst his return to action does suggest he’s overcome his injury and is a step closer to making his debut, I’m not banking on him making the squad against Huddersfield on Saturday if he’s looking as unfit as some NUFC fans are suggesting.