Phil Parkinson hasn't given up hope of re-signing Sammy Ameobi on loan at Bolton Wanderers.
The Newcastle United forward this week returned to St James's Park after his half-season loan at the League One club.
Bolton manager Parkinson had hoped to secure Ameobi for the rest of the season.
Rafa Benitez, his United counterpart, has suggested that Ameobi could be used as cover during the African Cup of Nations.
"Sammy has gone back," said Parkinson.
"It's a shame, and I don't think it's completely dead, but they have called quite a few of their loan players back to thicken out their squad through this period.
"We'd like to thank Sammy for his contribution, and we'll see what happens on that one going forward.
"We're also looking for players to replace him, because we need to make sure the squad remains strong."
Ameobi won't be eligible to play in tomorrow's FA Cup tie against Birmingham City, having played in the competition for Bolton earlier this season.