DAVID Meyler will spend a month on the other side of the Atlantic in a bid to regain his fitness for the start of next season.
Meyler has been sidelined since January after suffering a relapse just a month into his comeback from cruciate knee ligament damage.
Although the 21-year-old was on the bench for Sunderland’s games against Wigan and Birmingham last month, he was never likely to feature.
Meyler remains susceptible to swelling on his knee and Black Cats boss Steve Bruce is desperate to get the midfielder back to full fitness.
The Ireland U21 international is set to fly out to Vermont, in America, for a month of treatment from the same specialist who helped Chelsea’s Michael Essien in his recovery from cruciate damage.
If it proves to be successful, then fellow knee ligament victim Fraizer Campbell could also fly out to America when he gets to a more advanced stage of his rehabilitation.
Bruce told the Echo: “We are sending Meyler to Vermont to see a specialist to get him looked at.
“When the time is right in his rehabilitation, we will send Fraizer over there as well.
“There’s a new specialist who has set up a rehabilitation centre over there, specifically for knee injuries. They’ll do everything they can to get David right without having surgery.
“Essien and a couple of the Chelsea lads have been there so hopefully it will sort the problem out.
“It was a horrific injury Meyler had.
“I just gave him a bit of an incentive by putting him on the bench for a couple of weeks. But I was never going to use him because his knee is still not completely right.”
Meyler is one of five players – along with Campbell, Craig Gordon, Michael Turner and Lee Cattermole – who could struggle to be fit for the start of next season.
That is proving to be more of a pressing headache for Bruce than his short-term injury problems, with the Sunderland boss already resigned to being without Kieran Richardson, Asamoah Gyan, Danny Welbeck, Titus Bramble and Marcos Angeleri for the remainder of this season.
None of the injury absentees are likely to be fit for Saturday’s visit of Wolves with Bruce expected to name the same side that won at Bolton last weekend.
“I can’t see much changing in the next 10 days really,” added Bruce. “There’s still a few question marks hanging over players for next season which clouds things already.
“We need to get people like Meyler, Michael Turner and Lee Cattermole fit.”