ALAN Pardew’s sweating on Cheik Tiote’s fitness ahead of Newcastle United’s visit to Manchester City.
And Pardew has already been forced to rule Sylvain Marveaux out of Saturday’s game at the Etihad Stadium.
Another of Pardew’s wingers, Gabriel Obertan, is also doubtful, but striker Shola Ameobi will be back for third-placed Newcastle’s toughest game yet this season in the Premier League.
Tiote, pictured, has missed United’s last three games with medial ligament damage to his knee, and Danny Guthrie – who has ably deputised for the midfielder – is again on standby should he fail to prove his fitness on time.
Marveaux, Leon Best and Yohan Cabaye also suffered groin injuries in Newcaslte’s last game against Everton.
Pardew has revealed Marveaux – who missed most of last season at former club Rennes with an abdominal injury – won’t be in his squad, but striker Best and midfielder Cabaye will be fit to take on City.
Obertan is recovering from the toe infection which kept him out of the Everton game.
However, Ameobi joins his younger brother Sammy in the squad after returning from the hamstring problem which has sidelined him since last month’s draw against Tottenham Hotspur.
“Marveaux’s definitely out,” said Pardew.
“Shola will be involved – he’s back to fitness, so that’s good news for us.
“We’re still sweating on Cheik and Obertan.”
Cabaye played 90 minutes for France against Belgium in Paris last night, and he was expected back on Tyneside today to join preparations for the fixture against Roberto Mancini’s league leaders.
Pardew said: “We think that Cabaye will be fine.”
The midfielder sat out Friday night’s game against the United States.
But France’s medical team passed him fit for the Belgium fixture, which was a goalless draw.