Newcastle fans could soon be ready to welcome back one of their centre-backs and one of the stars of Rafa Benitez’s time at the club, the French defender, Florian Lejeune. The 28-year-old is currently sidelined with the second anterior cruciate ligament injury of his time at Magpies, but he’s progressing well.
Steve Bruce was recently quoted talking about Florian, he admitted: ‘It was remarkable the last time, his rehabilitation. We’re hoping after the international break he’s back on the grass’.
Before then going onto say: ‘That would be four-and-a-half months, which is remarkable. His knee looks very well. He’s out there training. He sees a specialist this week and if he says yes, then he can go ahead and start getting out there.’
It’s hard not to echo Steve’s sentiment regarding Florian either. Since he signed for the Magpies back in summer 2017, the big centre-back has featured 37 times, for Newcastle and in those matches the Magpies have won 12 times, giving them a win percentage of 32.4%.
However, when French centre-back is out of the side, which has happened 50 times in total owing to the injuries that he’s suffered, Newcastle have won only 14 times, resulting in a lower win percentage of 28%, making it fairly clear that when the 28-year-old defender is fit, the Magpies have a better chance of winning.
The rotation that his return will also provide will be key. English coach has continued in Rafa Benitez’s footsteps in playing three-at-the-back, and having Florian fit will relieve some of the pressure on the likes of Jamaal Lascelles, Fabian Schar, Paul Dummett and Federico Fernandez.