SHOLA Ameobi gave Newcastle United an injury scare at Victoria Park – but Alan Pardew’s says the striker will be fit for the new season.
Ameobi was labelled “unplayable” by Pardew after a scoring one goal and having a hand in two more for Sylvain Marveaux in last night’s comfortable 5-1 win over Hartlepool United.
The 30-year-old – handed the captain’s armband – hobbled off before the break after being caught by Jack Baldwin.
However, Pardew’s confident Ameobi suffered nothing more than a minor knock.
“He just got a little knock, but he’s fine,” Pardew told SportMail.
Ameobi opened the scoring from close range in the third minute, and floated a cross for Sylvain Marveaux to prod home at the second attempt after the restart.
And the long-serving player won the penalty converted by Marveaux in the 12th minute.
“When Shola’s in that sort of mood, as he showed against Tottenham last year at home, he can be unplayable,” added Pardew.
Yohan Cabaye – who didn’t travel to Holland for the weekend’s game against Den Haag – was again absent, but Pardew believes he’ll be fit for the season-opener against Tottenham Hotspur on August 18.
“Cabaye’s OK,” said Pardew. “We’re just taking care of him.
“He’s had a couple of little issues on the injury front, but we think he’ll be OK.”
Hartlepool couldn’t handle Newcastle’s pace and movement, with Marveaux and his fellow winger Romain Amalfitano catching the eye.
Second-half substitutes Haris Vuckic and Gabriel Obertan also found the net for United, backed by 2,503 fans.
“We played really well,” said Pardew.
“The underbelly of the side is very, very strong. I left seven or eight big hitters out.
“I could put any one of those in and around them, and there’d be no problem.
“I think that was Amalfitano’s best game. Also, Marveaux played well.”
- MILES STARFORTH