Sunderland midfielder Lee Cattermole is in line for a return from injury against Burnley next weekend, reports the Sunderland Echo.
Cattermole has been sidelined by niggling injuries, and last appeared for the Black Cats in the 0-0 draw with Aston Villa before the turn of the year. Since then, Sunderland have lost out by the odd goal to Manchester City, Liverpool and Tottenham but progressed to the fourth round of the FA Cup.
With Sunderland facing a side level on points with them, and just a point above the relegation zone, the need for a result next weekend is huge.
Sunderland's first team coach Charlie Oatway, told the newspaper: “Lee has had a couple of little niggly injuries.
“One was one that he’d been carrying for a few weeks, so it’s given him chance to give that a rest.
“He starts jogging today, and then I’m sure with the way he is as a person and a player, he should be training next week.”
The return of the 26-year-old to the heart of the Sunderland midfield will provide a huge boost. He provides plenty of aggression and bite but the way he reads the game favours his team more often than not.
Given the magnitude of the contest, and the bearing it could end up having on both side's season, the return of Cattermole is not only welcome but vital against a very hard working Burnley side, who have surprised a few by their fight this season, and shown they have the capabilities to compete in this division.