Steve Bruce has revealed he could make changes to his starting Newcastle lineup when they face Sheffield United at Bramall Lane on Thursday.
Fresh from their 2-2 draw with Manchester City on Saturday, the Magpies face another stern test as they look to put more distance between themselves and the relegation zone with a win against the highflying Blades.
While Saturday's side has been praised for holding Premier League champions City to a point, Bruce has admitted he may opt to freshen things up ahead the frantic Christmas period.
He said, as quoted by the Northern Echo:
“We were disappointing against Aston Villa - I thought we were disappointing as a team and that’s the thing we have to address. But I’ve been really pleased with Jonjo.
“Physically, we have asked him to do stuff he probably wouldn’t have been able to do before or been asked to do before. When I saw his physical stats against Aston Villa, they were terrific.”
Bruce's Newcastle are four points ahead of Southampton following the latter's 2-1 win over Watford and face games against Burnley, Crystal Palace and Manchester United after their trip to Bramall Lane.
Sheffield United, meanwhile, have been the surprise package in the Premier League this season, picking up 19 points from 14 games and sitting seventh in the table.