Rafael Benitez has hinted forgotten man Yoan Gouffran could be back available when Newcastle take on Crystal Palace this weekend.
Gouffran made a surprise return to the Magpies side for the clash with Stoke at the Britannia Stadium back in March, but had to leave the field late in the game after picking up a muscle injury.
The Frenchman is now close to returning to fitness, much to the relief of Magpies boss Benitez, who is also delighted to have Kevin Mbabu back in the frame.
Mbabu returned from a thigh injury last weekend and Benitez also hopes to have Gouffran back against the Eagles.
“We have Mbabu coming back, that is good news,” said Benitez. “Gouffran is closer, so we have some players getting closer. At least we have Mbabu, who is a defender and can help with the defender crisis.”