LOIC Remy is “touch and go” for Manchester United’s visit to St James’s Park.
The Newcastle United forward is battling to recover from injury in time to face the Premier League champions on Saturday.
Remy has missed the club’s last four games with a calf problem.
The 27-year-old’s absence up front has been keenly felt by misfiring Newcastle, who were hammered 4-0 by Southampton at the weekend.
United have scored just one goal in the nine Premier League matches in which Remy hasn’t been involved this season.
And under-fire manager Alan Pardew is desperate to have him back to face Man United, who were beaten 1-0 at Old Trafford by Newcastle in December.
But Pardew admits the game could come too soon for the on-loan player, who has scored 13 league goals so far this season.
“Loic’s touch and go,” Pardew said. “I’m not sure if he will (be fit).”
Pardew will definitely still be without influential defender Mathieu Debuchy.
Debuchy – who has missed the club’s last four games with a groin problem – revealed over the weekend that he hopes to return to training next week.
In his absence, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa has played at right-back.
The 24-year-old was substituted at the break during Newcastle’s defeat at the St Mary’s Stadium on Saturday.
Davide Santon – who has recovered from a bout of tonsillitis and a knee problem – replaced Yanga-Mbiwa for the second half with the home side leading 1-0.
Santon is pressing for a start against David Moyes’s side, who face Bayern Munich at Old Trafford tonight in the first leg of the club’s Champions League quarter-final.
The Southampton result saw Newcastle drop a place to ninth in the league table with six games left to play.
H Newcastle United’s Under-21s lost 4-2 at home to Stoke City.
Stoke race to a 2-0 lead in the game, with James Alabi and Charlie Ward finding the net.
But Newcastle got themselves back into the game.
Alex Gilliead scored a left-footed effort after the half-hour mark, and Olivier Kemen won and converted a penalty shortly to put United, captained by Gael Bigirimana, level before the interval.
However, the powerful visiting team regained control in the second half.
Kemen sliced the ball into his own net in the 48th minute, and Derice Richards struck a fourth at the hour mark for Stoke, coached by former Newcastle midfielder Glyn Hodges.