Newcastle boss Alan Pardew is hoping Davide Santon could be available to make his debut against Blackburn on Saturday.
The 20-year-old August signing had been in line to feature for the Magpies at Aston Villa on Saturday.
But the full-back damaged his right knee it in training last week and there were initial fears that he could be missing for a month.
However, Pardew is keeping his fingers crossed that the Italian could return to training within days after having fluid taken from his knee in an attempt to avoid surgery.
The Newcastle boss told the Northern Echo: "Davide has had fluid taken from his knee. Fingers crossed that will be OK. Maybe he will be available for next weekend.
"If that doesn't cure the problem, he could need an operation where they will tidy it up. But it is not cartilage, so that's good."
Pardew has confirmed Hatem Ben Arfa, who has not played a competitive game for the club in almost a year, will figure in Tuesday's Carling Cup clash at Nottingham Forest after spending the weekend going through extra training in preparation for his return.
He said: "Hatem is looking forward to it and he looks sharp in training. He will be knocking on the door and it looks like this team has goals already, so it will be nice to have him with us again."