Steve Harper ready to step in for injured Tim Krul at Newcastle United

Steve Harper: Would love the chance to play against Everton on Monday night

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Newcastle goalkeeper Steve Harper says he is in great shape and would relish the opportunity to play if Tim Krul is ruled out of Monday's game against Everton.

Krul has returned to Newcastle after being ruled out of the Holland squad with an elbow injury, making him doubtful for the clash at Goodison Park.

Harper could therefore be set to start his first Premier League match since April last year, and he has told Alan Pardew he is raring to go.

The 37-year-old was handed the goalkeeper's jersey for the Europa League tie in Athens against Atromitos when Krul was rested, and hopes to play more regularly throughout the season.

"I feel the best I've felt for a long time," he told the Shields Gazette.

"We all knew that this season there was a chance to get games under our belts.

"I had a chat with the manager at the start of pre-season and he said there would be an opportunity. We all want to remind him we're ready if needed.

"Having the extra games gives you that level of competitiveness. It's good for everybody."