Newcastle United Women duo continue recovery from long-term injuries
Written by Joseph Nelson
Newcastle United Women pair Rachel Lee and Anna Soulsby are both on the road to recovery from the long-term injuries they sustained last season.
The duo were both sidelined for parts of the 2021/22 campaign which saw the Lady Magpies finish second in the FA Women's National League Division One North, reach the final of the Bluefin Sport Insurance Women's Cup and the fourth round of the Vitality Women's FA Cup and play in front of a record crowd of 22,134 at St. James' Park last month.
Soulsby suffered a season-ending knee injury against Chorley Women in September while Lee hasn't played since February. However, last Monday, she underwent ACL (Anterior Cruciate Ligament) reconstruction, and the operation was a success.
Lee is one of the more experienced heads in Becky Langley's squad, having played in the Women's Super League and the Championship prior to her time at Newcastle.
Newcastle Women's physio, Tony Dunn said that Lee is "looking forward to her rehabilitation training."
Soulsby, meanwhile, is further along in her recovery. Dunn said: "Anna is 12 weeks post-operation and working very hard in the gym on her rehabilitation."
A dynamic winger, Soulsby missed the majority of last season due to her injury but could often be spotted with the squad on matchdays providing support.
Off the pitch, Soulsby is an energetic character and going into the new season, her optimism and drive could prove to be a valuable asset.
The winger posted an update on Twitter just days ago, with the words "working hard in rehab...".
As both members of Langley's squad continue their recovery from injury, supporters will no doubt be optimistic for the future. Despite narrowly missing out on the league title, Langley has already made her intention of lifting the trophy next season clear.
The return of both Lee and Soulsby is likely to galvanise the squad further and will only bolster the talented group of players the Newcastle Women boss has at her disposal.
Photograph courtesy of Colin Lock/@Tyneside_NUWFC