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Steve Bruce delighted to have forgotten man back in training

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Newcastle United's delayed Premier League campaign has turned out to be an advantage for defender Ciaran Clark.

The Republic of Ireland star was carried off in agony during the 4-0 defeat at Arsenal back in February when he left the Emirates Stadium on crutches following a bad collision.

Back then Clark's season was all but written off by staff and the ex-Aston Villa man was also facing heartache with the then scheduled Euro 2020 finals set to be out of his grasp.

But during lockdown Clark has been able to make a successful recovery from ankle ligament damage and an operation which took place before the virus pandemic.

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Clark is ahead of schedule and could even feature before the campaign is over.

As the players returned to training this week it was highlighted that the likes of Andy Carroll and Martin Dubravka should be available for selection if the Premier League gets the green light to restart next month.

But the emergence of the reliable figure of Clark also handed boss Steve Bruce some satisfaction.

When asked about the return of Carroll and Dubravka, Bruce told the Chronicle: "Ciaran Clark is another one.

"He's back up and running too.

"In that respect, we have a full bill of health."

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Bruce's delight at a full squad has also been echoed by skipper Jamaal Lascelles.

Lascelles staged a Press conference over Zoom this week as the club try to adjust to the "new normal".

Press conferences were scrapped during lockdown but with players back in training, United laid on interviews to journalists this week via video conferencing.

Lascelles was also asked about injuries and said: "We have been unlucky with injuries and never at a point where the manager had to pick a fully fit squad.

"When Newcastle have a fully fit squad we're a problem for teams.

"We can really push on."




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