EDDIE Howe admits the continued absence of David Brooks has caused a “sense of frustration” for both the player and the team, but is hopeful the Welshman can return “within a month”.

Brooks has not featured for Cherries since suffering ankle ligament damage against Brentford in a pre-season friendly in July.

The 22-year-old was initially expected to miss 12 weeks of action, but has already been sidelined for an additional four weeks and is still yet to return to training.

As well as 12 Premier League games, Brooks has also been unable to take part in some crucial Euro 2020 qualifiers for Wales, including last night’s clash with Hungary.

And Howe says that while the winger is remaining upbeat, he is increasingly eager to make his comeback.

The Cherries boss told the Daily Echo: “He’s been good around the place, but you can sense there’s a frustration and there’s a frustration from our side because we want him back on the pitch.

“Of course, Wales will feel the same way and David will feel the same way.

“Sometimes with these things you can’t rush it. You just have to let your body and the injury heal until you’re ready to return.

“Sometimes that’s the most frustrating feeling in the world but David will get there I believe.

“I don’t think there’s any reason why we can’t see him back in action hopefully within a month.”

Brooks enjoyed a stellar first season on the south coast. Having arrived from Sheffield United for an initial £10million in the summer of 2018, Brooks netted seven goals and provided five assists in 30 Premier League appearances and was rewarded with a new long-term contract in March.

But with the ankle problem keeping him away from playing out on the grass, Brooks has instead been forced to increase his time spent in the gym.

“I think there’s some players that, I wouldn’t say enjoy the gym work, but they will do it and it will become part of their routines and aside from the football it’s a big part of their work,” said Howe.

“I think David’s got a slightly different mentality.

“I think he’s very much a footballer and wants to be on the grass all the time.

“But when you’re injured, there’s no other place to be.

“You have to do your rehab and you have to accept that that’s the next best place for you and I think he’s done that really well.

“Although it’s not natural to him, he’s knuckled down, he’s worked incredibly hard, he’s kept himself as fit as he can do with the limitations that have been placed upon him.

“So I think that gives him a good chance that when he does come back, I think he’ll pick up the technical side very quickly and then we’re just going to have to build his fitness levels up.”

Cherries host Wolverhampton Wanderers in the Premier League on Saturday (3pm).