By Danny Wright
Francisco de Miguel Moreno has ruled Massadio Haidara out of Newcastle United’s clash with Stoke on Saturday.
Haidara, 24, is one of only two recognised left-backs on the books at St. James’ Park and has been out injured for the opening weeks of this season.
Although the French defender is on the verge of making a comeback, Rafa Benitez’s right-hand man Moreno has made it clear that he will not be involved against Stoke this weekend.
“Massadio is progressing well and doing things in right way. At the moment he has no chance (of playing),” he said, as quoted by the Newcastle Chronicle.
Haidara suffered a serious knee injury last season, severely limiting his game time while Newcastle won the Championship title and earned their return to the Premier League.
He made just one appearance last term, which came in the final day win over Barnsley where his side earned the second-tier title thanks to Brighton’s failure to beat Aston Villa.
The Magpies have had an on-going issue at left-back for the first few weeks of the season due to Paul Dummett’s untimely injury and the clubs’ inability to sign a new one before the transfer window slammed shut.
Chancel Mbemba had been filling in on the left side of the back four, but he too suffered an injury blow while on international duty with DR Congo earlier this month.
Jesus Gamez, who is usually a right-back, played there last week when the Tynesiders beat Swansea 1-0.
In other Newcastle United news, it has been confirmed that this 24-year-old Magpies player has also picked up an injury this week.