The manager is confident his first-choice centre-back pairing will be available for the Tyne-Wear derby, with Danny Simpson also in contention, but Tim Krul remains a doubtNewcastle manager Alan Pardew says injured centre-back duo Steven Taylor and Fabricio Coloccini have “a very good chance” of facing rivals Sunderland on October 21.
Captain Taylor had to be withdrawn after 56 minutes of the 2-2 draw with Reading at the end of September with a “little strain” of the calf, whereas Coloccini was injured while on international duty with Argentina earlier in the month.
And now, with Newcastle having only won once in their last six Premier League games, Pardew is optimistic of the first-choice centre-back pairing be available for the trip to the Stadium of Light after the international break, but remains uncertain on Tim Krul’s rehabilition.
|6/1||Newcastle are 5/1 with bet365 to draw 1-1 at Sunderland
He told The Chronicle: “They’ve got a very good chance. They should train this week with a bit of luck. And that’ll help.
“You look at certain players for our next game and they know what it is about, Steven’s one of them. I’m not so sure about Tim. We’ll have to see.”
Danny Simpson is the third absentee of an injury-ravaged defence for the Magpies, but Pardew is confident the right-back will be in contention for a recall after missing the 3-0 loss to Manchester United.
“I’m worried about how much work Danny had done,” Pardew continued.
“He had only trained for three or four days. The Bordeaux game took a bit out of him.”
Simpson will need no motivation for the encounter with Sunderland either, with the former Black Cat keen to get one over the club he played for on loan earlier in his career.
Pardew is also aware of the importance of a victory in the Tyne-Wear derby to fans, and will be hoping to continue his unbeaten streak against Sunderland – having avoided defeat in all three clashes so far.
Pardew added: “We’re going to have to make sure we get a team out there which knows how important this game is.
“They need to know how important it is to the fans – and they need to understand it in terms of passion and commitment of the team.”