The Newcastle manager, Glenn Roeder, is struggling to put together a squad for tomorrow night's Uefa Cup match with Eintracht Frankfurt as the club have 11 names on the casualty list.
The midfielders Kieron Dyer, who spent Sunday night in hospital after gashing his thigh during the 1-0 Premiership victory over Portsmouth, and Scott Parker have already been ruled out of the party to travel toFrankfurt. And they could yet be joined by James Milner and Charles N'Zogbia as they undergo treatment for hip and shin injuries respectively.
With Michael Owen, Shola Ameobi, Craig Moore, Damien Duff, Tim Krul and Olivier Bernard all long-term absentees and Steve Harper having flown to Germany for surgery on a double hernia, Roeder could be forced to give youth a chance at the Commerzbank Arena.
The youngsters Paul Huntington, Andrew Carroll, David Edgar and James Troisi were all on the bench for the 2-1 victory over Celta Vigo last week, and could be joined on the plane by goalkeeper Fraser Forster as the Magpies look for the point they need to ensure they finish at the top of Group H.
Roeder said: "Scott Parker has had a scan on his back and it has shown he has a strained muscle. While it is difficult to say how long he will be out of action, he will not be with us in Frankfurt. Kieron Dyer will not be going either. His leg was so bad that he spent Sunday night in hospital having the wound cleaned, and there is no way he will be able to play.
"Steve Harper is already in Germany, and while we would like to have waited until after Thursday for him to have his operation, he has a double hernia and the medical experts advised us that he should have his operation as soon as possible.
"That means that all our keepers - Shay Given, Steve and Tim Krul - will have had big operations this season.
"It also means that for the second trip into Europe we will have a teenage keeper with us in the shape of Fraser Forster, who will be on the bench. But if a player is missing, then it gives someone else a chance - and everybody knows what happened to Tim Krul in Palermo."
The Dutchman performed heroics in Sicily but has since had an operation to repair a damaged knee.Reuse content