By Anthony Marshall - Newcastle United Club Reporter
Alan Pardew is hopeful that three of his Newcastle United stars will be fit to face Fulham next Monday in the Premier League.
Cheick Tiote, Davide Santon and Demba Ba were all withdrawn during the Magpies' 3-0 victory over Stoke at St. James' Park, although Pardew insists that it was measures of precaution in each case, rather than any serious injury.
And, while the trio look unlikely to be involved at Bordeaux in the Europa League on Thursday night, the manager remains optimistic they could be back in action for the trip to Craven Cottage.
When asked what problems the players were suffering, Pardew replied: "Hamstring for Cheick, hamstring for Demba, a tightness, and Davide is a groin.
"I did say to the team at half-time, with the position we were in against ten men and 2-0 up, that we couldn't take any risks, so if they had any kind of tightness or strain they needed to come off.
"I think the three we took off tonight were kind of precautionary rather than tears and horrible scans tomorrow.
"Fingers crossed, we think they might all make Fulham."