CLARETS striker Charlie Austin will come back stronger than ever from his latest injury setback, according to assistant manager Jason Tindall.
Austin dislocated his shoulder for the third time in 14 months on Saturday, in the 2-1 defeat at home to Leeds.
The club were awaiting the full prognosis of his injury after scans on Monday, although Austin himself, on his Twitter account, admitted he was “back to square one”.
He is intent on sorting the problem for once and for all, and thanked Leeds defender Patrick Kisnorbo for his compassion: “I’m down, but there’s nothing I can do, I’ve done it three times now, and you’re thinking ‘why?’
“It hurt at the time, and I have to go through the process again when I’ve been in good form.
“Pat Kisnorbo was great and stayed with me, and said: ‘What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger’, and I want to get it sorted.”
Tindall said: “Charlie’s had an X-ray and it’s come back positive. He’s having a scan today, so that will give us a better indication on time scale.
“We’re a little bit in the dark in terms of how long he’s going to be out for, but we should have that information very soon.
“It varies, there’s different extents of the damage that can be done. The last time he did it, we went for the longer procedure rather than the shorter, but the early signs are very good in terms of what could have been.
“The shoulder went back in on its own after 15 to 20 minutes on Saturday, but previous to that it had to be pushed back in.”
But Tindall feels Austin will bounce back, as he did after suffering a similar blow in February: “Charlie’s a young lad with a very bright future in front of him, he’s an old-fashioned type of centre-forward, he’s hustle and bustle, he uses his strength, so he’s always going to pick up injuries.
“He puts his head and body in where it hurts, that’s the type of player he is, and he’ll come back stronger.
“In some ways, when you have these setbacks you reflect on things, and realise how lucky you are, and that it’s not as bad as it could be.
“He’s devastated, and you could see that when he did it, the pain he was in, and it’s not nice.
“I’ve been there with long-term injuries, and it’s a lonely place to be, you have to be very focused.
“You go through low periods, but we’ve got some very good people at the club that will help him get through it right.”
Austin has nine goals so far this season – as does striker partner Jay Rodriguez, and Tindall added: “It’s a shame because he’s been in great form, he’s been scoring goals and building up a great partnership with Jay.
“They were starting to do really well, so it’s a blow losing a goalscorer like Charlie.
“The most important thing is his health though, and we have to make sure he recovers in the right way and makes a full recovery.
“We’ll not put any pressure on him to return sooner than he can, it’s an injury he’s had before and we need to do the best for Charlie, and he needs to do the best for himself.”
Having brought Sam Vokes in on loan on Friday, Eddie Howe may have to dip into the loan market again before it finally closes on Thursday.
Tindall said: “We might move again, Sam came in to give us an extra body, and then we lose Charlie, so we’re still where we were before Sam came in.
“But it’s very difficult, a lot of clubs don’t want to let their players out on loan because similiar scenarios might happen to ours, when you lose a player to injury.
“Then you need to find a replacement yourself.”
However, there is good news in that Brian Jensen is close to a return after suffering a groin problem in September.
Tindall said: “Beasty is back in training, so he’s on his way back, and it will be good to get as many of our players back as possible, as we’re thin on the ground.”