Newcastle look likely to have a fully fit Jamaal Lascelles when they return for pre-season this summer.
The captain missed the final eight games of the season due to injury. He suffered a stress fracture back in April, ending his campaign early.
Fortunately, the Magpies’ place in the top flight was already confirmed by then.
Interestingly, Newcastle’s resurgence coincided with Lascelles’ absence. During his time out, Steve Bruce’s side picked up 16 points.
It was a tough season for Lascelles, even before the injury.
The 27-year-old missed a lot of football during winter, amid the club’s COVID outbreak.
Lascelles appeared to suffer more than most. He returned in the FA Cup against Arsenal, only to be withdrawn at half-time because of fatigue.
It’s been a stop-start season for a man who never even seemed to be in contention for England’s Euros squad.
However, the Chronicle claim he will be ready to go when the players return in July.
They state that Lascelles is on track to be ready for when pre-season kicks off.
As it stands, Newcastle have friendlies lined up against York, Harrogate and Burton.
With reports suggesting our first signing this summer will be centre-back Kristoffer Ajer, there is pressure on Lascelles to be fit when training resumes.
After a tough season where Newcastle have played better without him, the captain needs to prove himself in pre-season that he can still be the club’s best central defender.