Newcastle United pair battling to make Swansea clash

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FABRICIO Coloccini and Cheik Tiote are working overtime in a bid to be fit for Newcastle United.

The influential pair are battling to be available for Saturday’s home game against Swansea City.

Coloccini missed Newcastle’s last game with a thigh problem, while Tiote has been sidelined since October with a niggling knee injury.

They were at United’s training ground yesterday working with the club’s medical team while their team-mates had a day off.

And Newcastle manager Alan Pardew will assess defender Coloccini and midfielder Tiote today before making any decision on their availability to face Brendan Rodgers’ side.

“Fabricio and Cheik were in yesterday,” said assistant manager John Carver. “They were with the medical team. We’ll have to see how they are.”

Pardew will also make an assessment on Mike Williamson, who made his comeback from long-term injury in a reserve game on Tuesday.

The defender has been out since August with an ankle problem, and his return to fitness is timely given the season-ending injury suffered by Steven Taylor in United’s last home game, the defeat to Chelsea.

However, Newcastle won’t take any risks with Williamson if it’s felt he’s not ready to start a Premier League game. The 28-year-old played 45 minutes for the second string against Bolton Wanderers under the watchful eyes of Carver and first-team coach Steve Stone.

“We kept a close eye on Mike in Tuesday’s reserve game,” said Carver. “He was recovering yesterday, and we’ll find out how he is today. It’s great to see him back. He’s worked very hard.

“What we can’t forget is how long he’s been out, and we don’t want to take any chances. We don’t want to take unneccesary risks with the amount of football we’ve got coming up.”