Newcastle United manager Steve Bruce

Noel Whelan admits he is seriously concerned after Newcastle United manager Steve Bruce refused to put a timescale on Andy Carroll’s latest injury setback.

The former Leeds United striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, says that it is always a worry when a club does not deliver a definitive update on a player’s fitness problem.

Speaking to the media ahead of Sunday’s clash with Arsenal, Bruce revealed that the club are not sure just how serious the hip flexor issue is, saying that they are “not putting a timescale,” on his return.

Whelan says that a lack of proper update is a real concern for the Toon Army and their homegrown hero, insisting a hip flexor issue could mean a long-term absence.

“It always does (worry you) because if it’s a niggle or a strain, they come out and tell you it’s going to be three to four weeks,” Whelan told Football Insider.

“A hip flexor, that can be at least two months minimum, I would have thought. It depends on the player, how he looks after himself, what his recovery’s like, getting the treatment required.

“He can’t rush things, especially when it’s something as serious as that because you use that for generating power for jumping, pace, it’s all in your hips for these sportsmen. He’s got to make sure he’s 100 per cent before he comes back.”

Carroll has played 14 times for Newcastle since returning on a free transfer last summer, although he is yet to net his first goal back on Tyneside.

He has played 90 minutes just three times in the Premier League this season and managed to pick up four assists in five appearances in December.

In other Newcastle United news, Alex Bruce has shared a Danny Rose reveal from his dad at the Magpies’ training HQ.