Back injury giving Long the needle but West Brom striker confident of full recovery
West Brom striker Shane Long is optimistic he will fully recover from the back problem which has flared up in recent weeks and forced him to take injections to play.
The Republic of Ireland international admits he was suffering from the setback when he made the summer move from Reading but it has worsened as the season has progressed.
Long was only able to participate as a substitute during Saturday's home clash with Norwich but is confident he will be firing on all cylinders again in the near future.
Struggling: West Brom striker Shane Long is having injections to carry on playing
He said: 'I'm trying to save as much energy as possible so I can play on Saturdays. I've had enough injections recently.
'For the recent Everton game, I had something like five injections to get through the game and that didn't do me too well.
'I'm just trying to let it heal naturally as much as I can. It (the problem) was there when I signed for Albion but it never affected me until recently.
'I think one or two of the players here have had similar injuries so the staff know how to deal with it.
'It's always there, it's constant – but it's one of those things you can play through. I'm just doing the best I can to make myself available for selection on Saturday.'
Long added: 'In a perfect world, it would be summer now and I'd have six weeks off to recover.
'As it is, I need to do exercises, try and get through games and, over time, it will go away.
'I'm pretty confident that in a couple of weeks I'll be back to being as good as new.'