Injury Latest

David Connolly has given Alan Pardew a major boost by returning to training.

"David has trained and with the suspension of Jermain kicking in at Watford it is absolutely essential that David comes through," says Alan, "because at the moment you have got Brian and then you are looking at the youth team.

"So we have to be careful with him but he looked very fresh and nice and lively in training."

Neil Mellor is still recovering from his injury and Alan adds:

"Neil Mellor's foot is slow healing; it is a very bad wound that he took.

"I have a strong feeling that the injury he had wouldn't have happened without these new blades.

"It is something I am going to contact the FA about; I know they have had problems with them before.

"Some clubs have banned them and certainly I think they need to be looked at.

"There is no way he would have got that injury with studs, I am sure of it.

"He has taken a tackle and almost been cut open, which I only believe can happen with blades.

"With studs he might have had some indentation in his leg but in the old days you would get a really sore area where the holes from the boot contact with your shin or whatever, but not the sort of laceration that Neil incurred.

"I want to check it out with the FA although that is peripheral to our problems at the moment.

"I know the FA are looking at it and they will get a report from me about it."