Trio in fitness race
[[views]], BY ClubCall
Alan Pardew is hoping to have Davide Santon, Cheik Tiote and Tim Krul available for Newcastle's clash with Benfica on Thursday.
The Magpies face a crucial couple of games this week as they look to progress to the semi-finals of the Europa League and fight off the threat of relegation, and Pardew needs his star men available.
Pardew is hopeful that Santon, Tiote and Krul will all make the trip to Lisbon on Thursday but if the game does come too soon they should be fit for the Fulham clash.
"Cheik could be OK for Thursday, and Santon was perhaps a day's training away from being involved," Pardew revealed. "Sadio's close. Tim's close. I need them all back for Thursday. We know the next two are really important games for us.
"I think all those players I mentioned have got a great chance for Fulham, of course. Whether they make Thursday, we'll have to wait and see."
Sylvain Marveaux has been nursing a groin strain and was left on the bench against Manchester City but he should be fit and available for both games should Pardew call on him.
One player who will not make either game is Matthieu Debuchy as he struggles with a hamstring injury but Alan Pardew has revealed the Frenchman has a chance of making the Sunderland game on April 14th.