EMANUELE GIACCHERINI is likely to be involved in the Sunderland squad for this weekend’s Tyne-Wear derby.
But the trip to St James’s Park has come too soon for Billy Jones, who is expected to remain on the sidelines for another week.
Giaccherini has been out since September with an ankle injury, but has been back in training for the last fortnight and could take his place on the bench at St James’s Park, as Sunderland look to secure a fourth successive win over Newcastle United.
Sunderland boss Gus Poyet has no other fresh injury worries, but will not risk right-back Billy Jones on the sidelines, as the Black Cats take a safety-first approach over the ex-West Brom’s man return from a hamstring strain.
Poyet said today: “Giaccy, yes (he could be involved) because of his natural fitness.
“It was a different injury which has given him the chance to train longer on the fitness side of it, without the contact.
“Billy is different.
“So I would say that Giaccherini could be a possibility to be involved on Saturday. We will talk with him tomorrow.
“Billy will probably need an extra week.”