Newcastle are bracing for the loss of a second American star to a season-ending injury after striker Katie Stengel was diagnosed with a suspected stress fracture in her left ankle.
Stengel missed Monday morning’s 3-2 loss to Adelaide at McDonald Jones Stadium and coach Craig Deans said the club was waiting on more news about the injury.
It follows Newcastle’s loss of Stengel’s former youth national side teammate, Taylor Smith, to a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament two weeks ago.
“She could be out for the rest of the season,” Deans said of Stengel.
“She trained this week and she was hopefully going to play but it’s flared up.
“I think she’s just seen [doctor] Neil [Halpin] now and she just needs to get it confirmed, so hopefully it’s not, but if it is, it’s sad for her.
“And obviously Taylor is out for the season. Just from a human point of view, it’s upsetting to see players injured for long periods of time and it probably affects the group a little bit.”
Stengel, 26, was the Jets’ leading scorer last season with 10 goals in her debut campaign for the club, who made the finals for the first time since 2009.
The Utah Royals forward injured her ankle at training but she recovered to score a few days later in the round six 3-1 loss to Melbourne City. She backed up a week later to score twice against Perth in the 2-2 draw in which Smith was injured late.
Stengel did not feature in the two friendlies against China on the Gold Coast during the Jets’ bye week and has been spending time with her foot in a CAM boot.
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