Coloccini close to Newcastle comeback

The Argentine missed his side's 2-2 draw with Liverpool after picking up a groin injury on international duty but the Magpies skipper could be set for a return against Sunderland
Newcastle United boss Alan Pardew has revealed that captain Fabricio Coloccini could return from injury to face Sunderland.

Newcastle travel to the Stadium of Light on Sunday to meet their bitter rivals and will be looking to avenge a 3-0 defeat when the sides last met in April at St James' Park.

13/8 The Magpies are 13/8 with Bet365 to win the Tyne-Weir derby
And defender Coloccini, who missed his side's 2-2 draw with Liverpool after picking up a groin injury on international duty with Argentina, could yet make a surprise return.

"Colo has had a really good week," Pardew told reporters. "If he's ready I've got no hesitation about putting him in.

"If not against Sunderland, against Chelsea or Manchester City."

Coloccini's prospective comeback would boost a defence already depleted by the suspension of Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, who was sent off against Liverpool.

Steven Taylor is still struggling with a hamstring problem and Pardew will wait to decide whether to include the Englishman in his squad.

"Steven Taylor has trained and we are going to see whether he's going to start on Sunday," Pardew added.

"We will have to make the choice tomorrow (Saturday) or Sunday, whenever we think it's right to make that decision. It will be touch and go for both of those guys [Coloccini and Taylor]."

Meanwhile, Pardew has challenged France midfielder Moussa Sissoko to become more consistent.

"I think Moussa is a player who's perfect for the Premier League in terms of his physical stature, his mentality, his work rate and his quality," Pardew told The Northern Echo.

"I think he's getting the balance right. He's one of the players we're looking to for consistency of performance.

"If we can get him consistently in the sevens and eights (out of 10), then he's going to be a massive asset for the club."