Shay Given will probably be back with a couple weeks of the season to go, but Newcastle manager Kevin Keegan has no plans to play him.
Steve and Shay training – big battle next season for first team
When Keegan was asked if Given would play in any of Newcastleâ€™s remaining four games the Newcastle manager told the Evening Chronicle:
â€œI doubt it.â€ â€œI think heâ€™ll be fit by the end of the season, and heâ€™ll train with us for maybe the last week or 10 days, but thereâ€™s no sense for him to play a match.â€
â€œHe just needs to know by the end of the season that heâ€™s fit, ready to go away and come back fit for pre-season with all his problems behind him.â€
â€œI think that, for him, will be a massive relief.â€
In the close season it promises to be one of the battles for a first team position between perennial second string Steve Harper and Shay Given.
Make no mistake Harper has greatly impressed the Newcastle coaching staff with his mature ways and his great form since taking over from Shay. He gave another masterful and safe performance at Fratton Park on Saturday, and is as safe as houses.
But that will be just one position next season where thereâ€™ll be a battle for a first team place, because we think weâ€™ll see it all over the team, and thatâ€™s got to be a good thing.
We just cannot wait for next season to arrive.