Hughton hopeful over Taylor

Magpies boss keen to see centre-half back in action

Taylor: Sidelined

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Newcastle United manager Chris Hughton is confident Steven Taylor will be fit for the start of the new season.

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The centre-half was forced off during the Magpies' opening pre-season fixture against Carlisle United after damaging his shoulder.

The injury-jinxed defender has suffered with a similar problem in the past, with a dislocated shoulder keeping him sidelined for four months back in 2006.

Taylor has undergone a series of medical tests since picking up the knock, and looks set to sit out the remainder of Newcastle's Premier League preparations, but the injury is not thought to be as serious as first feared.

Hughton accepts that he will be without the former England U21 international for the foreseeable future, but remains optimistic regarding his chances of making a season opener against Manchester United on 16th August - a game which can be seen live on Sky Sports HD 1 and Sky Sports 1.

Fingers crossed

"Hopefully it is not too long out for Steven but we want to assess it properly first and then clarify the situation," Hughton told the Journal.

"He will definitely be out of the Norwich game (on Saturday) and it could be a few more weeks after that but we're still assessing it, and we're hoping to have more information by the end of the week.

"It's normal that people will be worried as he has had an injury there before, but we don't want to pre-empt anything by speculating how long he will be out for.

"Steven is desperate to play games because it was a really difficult time for him at the end of last season.

"I think he just wants to play games again so we've all got our fingers crossed for him."