Sam Allardyce admits Newcastle United have been left "gutted" by Michael Owen's thigh strain.

Newcastle fear Owen could be out of action for six weeks with his latest injury problem and Allardyce has questioned Steve McClaren's decision to pick the striker in the meaningless friendly.

"While we do not want to prejudge how long Michael while be out, our assessment is four to six weeks and it is so disappointing it has left us gutted," bemoaned Allardyce.

"This assessment is after our people were in touch with the England medical team.

"To tell the truth, it looks about six weeks but we will be hoping to get this speeded up a bit.

"We have told England we want Michael back here as soon as possible so he can have his scan and start his treatment."