Islam Slimani has taken advantage of the two-day break handed to Newcastle United players to return to Algeria to be with his family and fast-track his return to fitness.
With the Magpies out of the FA Cup, Rafa Benitez gave players permission to take the weekend off. And according to a report on Algeria Federation Federation website, the forward has been training alone in Sidi Moussa - the training complex for the national team - as he looks to get back to fitness.
Slimani has been hampered by a thigh injury and so is his chances to make his debut for Newcastle since his winter transfer deadline day from Leicester City.
@NUFC’s two-day break:
- Nostaglic Atsu flew to Portugal to watch Porto take on Rio Ave
- Kenedy happy enough with his start to life at the St. James’ Park to get 'another' tattoo
- Slimani - battling with a thigh problem - back in Algeria to train alone.
Picture via FAF pic.twitter.com/A6Z7KkyMPu — Tolu Olasoji (@Tollexrism) February 19, 2018
The former Sporting CP marksman has only 10 games left to play - due to his loan deal which expires at the end of the season - as the Magpies are out of other cup competitions.
With 11 league games left this term, he is eligible to appear in a game less, as he would not be allowed to play against his parent club.
If certified fit enough, the Algeria international could finally get the chance to make his first appearance for Rafa Benitez’s side in their next English Premier League tie against Bournemouth on Saturday.
The 29-year-old will return to England on Tuesday to join up with his Newcastle teammates.