Newcastle United’s Pardew backs Elliot to grab opportunity

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ROB Elliot has been backed to seize his Premier League chance with both hands at Newcastle United.

The goalkeeper will make his league debut for the club against Southampton tomorrow.

United manager Alan Pardew will be without Krul, who suffered an ankle injury in Thursday night’s 1-0 Europa League win over Metalist Kharkiv.

Krul was caught late by Jonathan Cristaldo as the Ukrainian side pressed for an equaliser.

And the 24-year-old – who made three superb saves after Shola Ameobi put Newcastle ahead from the penalty spot – left the Metalist Stadium on crutches.

Krul – who had a scan yesterday – is yet to see an ankle specialist, but it is feared he faces as many as five weeks on the sidelines.

Elliot, signed from Charlton Athletic in the summer of 2011, has made just six appearances for the club, all of them in cup competitions.

“I’d have no qualms about playing Rob – he’s been absolutely brilliant in training,” Pardew said. “So I’d have no problem with that.”

Newcastle’s other senior goalkeeper, long-serving Steve Harper, has a niggling knee problem.

While Krul’s absence is a blow, Pardew at least can call upon Cheik Tiote, Yoan Gouffran, Davide Santon and Steven Taylor.

All four sat out the Metalist game for different reasons, but the quartet will be available to face Southampton.

“I’ve got a chance to bring in four players fresh,” said Pardew.

“When Cheik pulled out an hour before the game (with a virus), I thought to myself ‘when am I going to get some luck in this cup?’. He didn’t feel right.

“My luck’s changed, because Vurnon (Anita) was terrific. Cheik would have done well to have played as well as Vurnon did.”

Meanwhile, Pardew is not mad about his Southampton sacking in 2010 – but he still wants to get even tomorrow.

“Trust me, I want to win this game more than anyone,” Pardew said. “I’ve got a lot of friends who I love in Southampton.

“They were happy when they beat us (earlier in the season), but we’re a little bit stronger this time. Hopefully, we’ll win.”

While still of the belief his dismissal was “unjust”, Pardew added: “I’ve always had faith in my ability.

“I thought when I got the sack from Southampton it was unjust, and still to this day think that, like the manager who’s just gone (Adkins), if I’m honest.

“I ain’t bitter about it – it’s not going to eat me up – but I do want to win.”