Islam Slimani’s debut for Newcastle United has been put on hold due to injury, Rafael Benitez confirmed.
The 29-year-old joined the Magpies from Leicester City on loan during the January transfer window so as to get more playing time.
But after three weeks, the Algeria international is yet to make his first appearance owing to a thigh muscle strain he picked up in training at Leicester.
And having suffered a relapse to the injury, his gaffer has confirmed that the former Sporting CP striker will not be available when they face Bournemouth at the Vitality Stadium.
“Slimani had a setback so he will not be available at least maybe a couple of weeks,” Benitez said in a pre-match press conference.
“We have to keep working with him because he had an injury when he came and he had a setback in our training session and we have to just deal with that.
“He was training really hard I saw him the other day and talking with him he was quite positive he was feeling really well and training really well and then he felt a little bit of this problem again so we have to be sure the next time he’s okay.”
Prior to his departure from the King Power Stadium, the attacker scored five goals in 17 appearances in all competitions and will be looking to hit the ground running when he eventually returns to full fitness.