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Defensive Decisions For Pardew

NUFC Logo Newcastle United FC

Alan Pardew will be without several key defenders and goalkeeper Tim Krul for this weekend's trip to champions Manchester City

By Dan King - Newcastle United Club Reporter

Alan Pardew admits he has a number of defensive decisions to make against Manchester City on Saturday with Davide Santon and Mathieu Debuchy both set to miss the game at the Etihad Stadium.

With Tim Krul, Massadio Haidara and Fabricio Coloccini also not in manager's plans for the weekend as they recover from injury, the likes of Danny Simpson, James Tavernier and Mike Williamson could come into contention against the champions.

Debuchy limped off with a hamstring injury against Wigan in Newcastle's last game while his replacement Haidara was hurt by a late Callum McManaman tackle at the DW Stadium.

Santon then had to withdraw from international action with Italy under-21s with a hamstring strain while Coloccini and Krul are both now back in training but are not yet ready for action.

Speaking about Haidara, who was fortunate to escape with only bone bruising and soft tissue damage at the DW Stadium, Pardew said: "He won't make this weekend but fingers crossed that he could be playing in Benfica because we're missing both our first choice full-backs this weekend and that's a bit of a blow for us."

Krul, meanwhile, is back in training after missing the last six games but Pardew does not expect him to play on Saturday.

"Not really, no," he said. "I think he's had four or five days of training and that's certainly not enough to budge the one we've got. He's played very, very well, Rob Elliott, so he's got a bit of work to do yet."

However, he had more positive news on Steven Taylor, Yohan Cabaye, Moussa Sissoko and Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa all returning unscathed from international duty.

"I went to the Spain-France game and Cabaye played well against top opposition and actually Sissoko came on the pitch and changed the game, I felt," Pardew said. "So both of them are in a good mental state going forward.

"Our other guys all performed well so we've come out the other side of that okay."

Meanwhile, Coloccini returned to Tyneside this week following a short break in Argentina as he recovers from a back injury. 

"He's back in the training ground," Pardew said. "We think he's a good three weeks away, I would say, from first-team action but his experience and just having him around today is important."