Newcastle midfielder Scott Parker has been ruled out for up to five weeks with a knee injury.

The 25-year-old suffered the injury on 17 December and the club has confirmed he will require surgery.

It is the latest setback for beleaguered Newcastle boss Graeme Souness who is already without several key players.

Souness is already without Michael Owen (foot) Emre (hamstring), Kieron Dyer (hamstring), Steven Taylor (shoulder), Stephen Carr (hernia) and Craig Moore (hamstring).

Meanwhile, Lee Bowyer is suspended for another two games.

Souness said: “When you look at the six or so players we’ve got injured, any team in the country would miss them.

“Take six of Manchester United’s, Arsenal’s, Liverpool’s or Chelsea’s best players away and see what type of team they could put out.”

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