Newcastle striker Demba Ba to undergo scan

 

Newcastle boss Alan Pardew admits in-form striker Demba Ba could be a doubt for next weekend's Barclays Premier League trip to Anfield after limping out of Sunday's late win over West Bromwich Albion.

Pardew revealed a suspected shin injury had caused Ba to be replaced by Sammy Ameobi in the 72nd minute, after the Senegal striker had claimed his seventh goal in nine games with his 35th minute opener.

Ba will have a scan on the complaint this week and Pardew said: "Demba appears to have a bit of a nerve problem. It is not a major concern and I don't think it is an ongoing problem, but the major question is whether he can make next week."

If Ba does not pass a fitness test Pardew has plenty of striking options with his replacement Ameobi promising to provide plenty of energy and purpose after a performance on Sunday which culminated in the shot which led to Papiss Cisse's deflected injury-time winner.

Pardew added: "Sammy looks to provide a little bit of a spark for us. I was searching for some sort of lift for the team and I thought he was very positive for us. We changed the system a couple of times and he tried to create for us."

Baggies boss Steve Clarke admitted the possibility of losing on-loan Belgium striker Romelu Lukaku back to Chelsea in January is out of his hands after his superb display at St James' Park on Sunday.

Chelsea boss Roberto Di Matteo confirmed this week that a clause exists in the loan deal which allows the Stamford Bridge men to recall Lukaku from his loan spell once the transfer window reopens.

Clarke said: "What happens in January happens in January. That's no concern of mine at this present time. Romelu has been a good substitute for us and he has been patient and every now and then you have to give him a chance to play."

Clarke will look forward to next weekend's clash with struggling Southampton in a confident mood despite back-to-back bad luck stories, with a late loss to Manchester City preceding their St James' Park heartache.

Clarke added: "If the players continue to play in the same manner we will be talking about good points and good victories most weeks, so that is what we have to build on and continue to look at.

"We have to take our frustration into our next game which is Southampton at home next week. The players know they have played well and deserved to get a minimum of three points at Newcastle, if not three."

PA

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