Steven Fletcher could be back in contention for the trip to Arsenal in two weeks, provided a combination of rest and specialist treatment provide relief from an Achilles injury.
The Scotland striker, who has endured a miserable season both on and off the pitch, has missed the last couple of games after Poyet revealed he was carrying an injury far more worrying than first hoped.
But surgery isn't a certainly, according to the manager, who told the Sunderland Echo:
The plan is for Steven to rest and to receive specialist treatment.
I really don’t know exactly what treatment he will have - I’m an expert on knees and ankles but not Achilles.
The hope is that after a fortnight out, he will be able to return for the Arsenal game, towards the end of February.
Injuries are a tough thing to judge really. We all like to have our say but it's almost always in spite of near total ignorance.
I've always been of the opinion that if there is an injury problem there then it's best to just get it fixed definitively rather than just messing on looking for short-term relief. I'm know nowt though.
Just hope he comes back as the Fletcher we know and love rather than the one who has limped through the season so far.