The Newcastle Knights are hoping the Cowboys can help them out after Mitchell Pearce received some dreaded injury news.

The Newcastle Knights are hoping to secure an early release for young Cowboys playmaker Jake Clifford after halfback Mitchell Pearce suffered a torn pectoral muscle.

Pearce, 31, is expected to miss up to 10 weeks following a pectoral tear suffered on Sunday during his side’s loss to the Dragons. Scans today revealed the halfback requires immediate surgery.

The timing of Pearce’s injury couldn’t have come at a worse moment for the Knights, with coach Adam O’Brien admitting he will struggle to name a 21-man squad on Tuesday as the club battles a mounting casualty list.

The club is currently 10th on the NRL ladder, with one win to their name from the opening four rounds.

Mithcell Pearce

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, the club is now pushing for North Queensland to grant Clifford an immediate release so he can take over for the injured Pearce.

Clifford was dropped and left out of the Cowboy’s squad on Saturday, but despite this, the club is refusing to budge and grant the 23-year-old an early release.

The Cowboys young gun signed on with Newcastle last November, on a two-year deal that will commence in 2022.

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