Sunderland suffer big Ross Stewart injury blow ahead of Millwall, Reading and Watford
Sunderland striker Ross Stewart and defender Dennis Cirkin both look set for spells on the sidelines due to injury setbacks.
Black Cats striker Stewart picked up a thigh issue during the warm-up ahead of Monday’s 1-0 defeat at Middlesbrough, meaning he was taken out of the starting XI.
The forward had scans after the match, with BBC Newcastle now reporting he will be unavailable for at least ‘four to eight weeks, but realistically probably 12.’
Cirkin was also forced off during the match against Boro with a hamstring problem and will reportedly be out until the new year, though it’s also been claimed by BBC commentator Nick Barnes that the news may not be as bad as first feared.
There will then be a two-week break for international fixtures before Tony Mowbray’s side host Preston on October 1.
Stewart was Sunderland’s top scorer last season with 26 goals, and has already scored five times in seven Championship appearances this campaign.
The Scot was forming a promising partnership with new signing Ellis Simms, who is on loan from Everton, yet the former’s absence will leave the squad extremely light of attacking options.
Sunderland’s Sporting Director Kristjaan Speakman has previously said the club are unlikely to add free agents to their squad after missing out on more signings on transfer deadline day. Still, injury setbacks could force the Black Cats to re-think their plans.
Sunderland are already without defender Daniel Ballard who suffered a foot fracture in the 2-2 with QPR last month.