Sunderland midfielder Josh Scowen could miss tonight’s clash with AFC Wimbledon as he faces a shin problem. 

Boss Lee Johnson admitted Scowen could miss up to four weeks of action in his pre-match press conference.

In a confusing turn of events, the new Sunderland Head Coach also hinted he could indeed make the starting eleven to face the Dons.

Scowen was substituted in the second half of Sunderland’s 4-0 win over Lincoln on Saturday afternoon after complaining of shin discomfort.

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The 27-year-old then had a scan on Monday morning, but no conclusive results were reached.

It leaves Johnson with a tough decision to make. He could risk further injury by selecting him but have one of Sunderland’s top performers in the side for what could be a tough game.

On the flip side, he could leave Scowen out to recover until the weekend, when Sunderland face Shrewsbury Town.

Speaking to SAFC.com, Johnson gave an update on Scowen’s problem. 

“He needed an x-ray on Monday morning so we’re just waiting for the results of that and the breakdown from the specialist,” Johnson said.

“I think it could go either way, to be honest. It could be one where he’s out for three or four weeks, or he could be fit for the Wimbledon game. Hopefully, we get the best-case scenario.”

Scowen has been an influential figure at Sunderland since joining from QPR last January.

On average this season, he has played 1.6 key passes and 1.3 crosses per game, as well as being a huge threat from set-piece scenarios.

He has impressed more since Lee Johnson took charge as he reverted to his preferred central midfield role after being deployed as a wide attacking midfielder under Phil Parkinson.

Losing Scowen would be Johnson’s first major blow since taking charge and means he could have a selection headache going into a big fixture in which Sunderland could return to League One’s top six.