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The Black Cats' star striker has been playing through the pain of an Achilles problem and the Uruguayan is concerned about the best way to approach managing his condition

Sunderland manager Gus Poyet is concerned over an Achilles injury which continues to plague striker Steven Fletcher.

The Scotland international has continued to play whilst struggling with the injury but was forced to miss Saturday's 3-0 win over local rivals Newcastle.

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Poyet now faces a decision over whether to send the 26-year-old for surgery or to continue attempting to manage the problem throughout the remainder of the season as Sunderland fight to retain their Premier League status.

"It's affecting him more than I thought," the Uruguayan told The Sunderland Echo. "I'm a bit worried about it.

"We're analysing it with the medical staff but we're going to have to make a decision one way or the other.

"We'll have to look at the games ahead and the chance of rest in between but we'll beed to make a strong decision."

Poyet paired Fabio Borini and Jozy Altidore in attack in the win at Newcastle, while he can also call upon January signing Ignacio Scocco and England Under-21s international Connor Wickham, who scored eight goals in 11 appearances while on loan in the Championship with Sheffield Wednesday earlier this season.

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