PAUL Dummett is facing an eight-week spell on the sidelines – putting Newcastle United on the verge of a defensive crisis.
The defender took a blow to his kneecap in last week’s game against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park.
And the club fear the injury the 23-year-old suffered in the 1-1 draw will sideline him until mid-April.
United head coach John Carver is already short of defensive options, with Steven Taylor sidelined for the rest of the season with a ruptured Achilles tendon.
The loss of versatile Dummett for up to two months would be another blow to Carver, whose 11th-placed side take on Premier League champions Manchester City on Saturday.
Carver has just two senior central defenders – Fabricio Coloccini and Mike Williamson – available to play at the Etihad Stadium.
Newcastle have previously said they can’t recall defender Jamaal Lascelles from his season-long loan deal at Nottingham Forest.
The club farmed out 20-year-old centre-half Remie Streete to Rangers on transfer deadline day early this month.