Advocaat: Johnson injury not as bad as first feared

Adam Johnson does not require surgery on a shoulder injury and could return for Sunderland sooner than expected.

Sunderland head coach Dick Advocaat has been boosted by the news that Adam Johnson's shoulder injury is not as bad as first feared.

The England international sustained the injury in training earlier this week and Advocaat initially stated that the winger could miss up to two months of action.

However, the former Manchester City star does not require surgery on the issue and Advocaat is hopeful he can return within six weeks.

"It is not as bad as we expected," the Dutchman said. "He'll be out for at least six or seven weeks, but at first [the medical staff] said at least eight and it could have been worse if he needed an operation.

"It is better than we expected."

Yann M'Vila, signed on a season-long loan from Rubin Kazan earlier in the transfer window, is in line to make his debut after Advocaat confirmed the midfielder is in his squad for Saturday's Premier League contest against Norwich City.

The Frenchman was sent off on his first appearance in a Sunderland shirt in an Under-21 clash against Norwich earlier this week for headbutting opponent Jamar Loza, but the suspension does not apply to the first team.