Fabricio Coloccini faces a battle to be fit in time for Newcastle United’s season-opener.
The club’s captain is not expected to be involved against York City at Bootham Crescent tonight.
Coloccini has been unable to play so far because of an Achilles problem, according to head coach Steve McClaren.
And the 33-year-old – who has just one year left on his United contract – will have just one more opportunity to play before the club faces Southampton at St James’s Park on August 9.
Chancel Mbemba’s move to St James’s Park, meanwhile, won’t go through until the end of the week
The defender needs to get a visa before his switch from Anderlecht can be completed.
And Saturday’s friendly against Borussia Monchengladbach at St James’s Park will be his only chance to get game time alongside his new team-mates before the new season kicks off.
Long-serving Steven Taylor seems certain to start the campaign in the heart of head coach Steve McClaren’s defence.
But the identity of his central defensive partner is an issue for McClaren, who is also expected to leave out a handful of first-team players against York.
Defender Jamaal Lascelles, another contender to start in defence against Southampton, could play at Bootham Crescent.
Lascelles, 21, joined Newcastle from Nottingham Forest last summer, but was loaned back ot the Championship club for the season.
Yoan Gouffran, Gabriel Obertan and Karl Darlow could also play against York.