Ritchie requires surgery after ankle injury setback

Newcastle United
Matt Ritchie

Matt Ritchie has required minor surgery on his ankle after suffering a setback in his bid to recover from the injury he suffered in August.

The 29-year-old suffered ligament damage following a strong tackle by Hamza Choudhury in the Carabao Cup clash against Leicester City at St James’ Park on August 28.

Ritchie was forced off at half-time, with the Magpies eventually going on to lose the match on penalties.

At the time boss Steve Bruce slammed the “red card” challenge and he revealed that he would be without the Scotland international until the end of October.

However, it appeared that Ritchie was going to return sooner than expected only for Bruce to reveal in September that his eagerness to make a comeback caused him to “suffer a little bit of a setback”.

And an update on the player, who was signed by former Newcastle boss Rafael Benitez from Bournemouth on a five-year deal in summer 2016, has revealed that he required a small operation on his ankle this week.

As a result, Ritchie, who has made almost 130 appearances for the Tynesiders, is unlikely to be fit to face Chelsea after the international break.

However, there is a possibility that he could be back for either the visit of Wolves on October 27 or the trip to West Ham on November 2.

Newcastle were boosted going into the international break with 22-year-old winger Allan Saint-Maximin reporting no issues after making his return in Sunday’s 1-0 win against Manchester United.

The summer signing from French Ligue 1 side Nice had been struggling with a hamstring problem, but his 83 minutes against the Red Devils were deemed a success by the France Under-21 international.

He said: “I wanted to come back on the pitch. I have a little bit of pain, but I have two weeks to do a good recovery. I’m happy.”