Steve McClaren says that he is going to give Moussa Sissoko until the very last minute in the hope that he will be fit enough to face Manchester United.

The United boss says it would be a ‘big blow’ if he doesn’t make it, especially having already lost Daryl Janmaat on the right hand side, via suspension after his sending off at Swansea.

Chancel Mbemba is expected to fill in at right-back, although Steve McClaren said that he had been working on a number of alternatives in training.

When Janmaat was sent off against Swansea, Steven Taylor went alongside Fabricio Coloccini and Mbemba at full-back, with surely the smart money on that being repeated at Old Trafford.

After a scan, the medical staff suggested it would be a couple of weeks until Moussa Sissoko could play again.

However, Steve McClaren has been keen to pay tribute to the French midfielder’s desperation to play and work in training to achieve that.

As for potential replacements, Gabriel Obertan is likely to play on the right with Rolando Aarons on the left (see predicted Newcastle team HERE), unless the Newcastle Head Coach makes more substantialchanges to his formation/team selection.

Steve McClaren:

“Credit to Moussa Sissoko and it is not as bad we first thought.

“He might still have a chance, whereas five days ago we didn’t think that.”

Leaving it late:

“I think we are leaving it as late as possible to give Moussa as much time as possible.

“Losing Janmaat already on that right hand side – to lose Sissoko as well would be a big blow.”