TIM Krul has given embattled Alan Pardew a lift ahead of Newcastle United’s home game against Leicester City.
The goalkeeper is expected to be fit to line up in goal at St James’s Park on Saturday.
Krul had suffered an elbow injury in a training session over the weekend while on international duty with Holland.
And there were fears the 26-year-old faced several weeks out.
United, unusually, issued two statements on Krul yesterday, with the second update stressing that the club was “confident” he would be fit to face Leicester.
The clarification addressed concerns that the “ligament damage” revealed in the first statement would keep Krul out for some time.
It read: “Tim Krul has been further assessed by the club’s medical staff, and the club can confirm that he has nothing more than a very minor elbow injury.
“The club will continue to monitor the situation, but are confident that he will be available for the game against Leicester City on Saturday.”
Krul, however, still has to prove his fitness on the training pitch ahead of the fixture, which third-from-bottom United need to win to have a chance of ending the weekend out out of the Premier League’s relegation zone.
Elbow injuries are particularly troublesome for goalkeepers.
And Krul spent several weeks on the sidelines with an elbow problem the season before last.
Injury data analyst Ben Dinnery, from respected website physioroom.com, said: “The statement says it’s a minor issue, which is obviously good news.
“But if you’re looking at a grade one elbow tear, you could typically be looking at two to three weeks out.
“If there’s more extensive fibre damage, and you’re talking about a grade two tear, it could be more than a month.”
Rob Elliot - who has been on international duty with the Republic of Ireland - will deputise for Krul against Leicester should he fail to prove his fitness in time.