MAPOU Yanga-Mbiwa is ready to seize his chance at Newcastle United with both hands - and ease the pain of Fabricio Coloccini’s absence.
Captain Coloccini is facing a six-week spell on the sidelines after suffering a knee injury in yesterday’s 1-0 defeat to West Bromwich Albion at The Hawthorns.
The club will also be without suspended right-back Mathieu Debuchy for the next three games after he was sent off for a two-footed challenge on Claudio Yacob.
Yanga-Mbiwa - who performed well in Coloccini’s absence earlier in the season - is as comfortable at centre-half as full-back.
And the 24-year-old will be an important figure for United - who face Cardiff City in the third round of the FA Cup on Saturday - over the coming weeks.
“We lost two good players - Fabricio and Mathieu,” Yanga-Mbiwa told SportMail.
“But we have a good bench. They can’t play, so it is a chance for other players.
“It’s up to the manager. If the manager needs me to play, I am ready. I will play for the team and do my best. At the training ground I do my best, work hard and wait for my chance.”
Yanga-Mbiwa replaced Coloccini at The Hawthorns shortly after Debuchy’s 63rd-minute dismissal.
“We’re disappointed,” said the France international. “We had a great chance to win, but we lost.
“We’re now thinking about the next game.”
Pardew, famous for his FA Cup exploits as a player with Crystal Palace, is keen for a run in the competition, and Yanga-Mbiwa says Newcastle’s players are now focused on progress in the cup.
“All games are a challenge for the team,” he said. “We try to become better game after game. We need to beat Cardiff. “