Pardew: Stars will have to wait
Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew says the likes of Papiss Cisse and Hatem Ben Arfa will have to wait for their chance to play.
Pardew is reticent to change his team after posting four successive wins and climbing to sixth in the Premier League.
Upsets over Chelsea and Tottenham sparked a good run for Newcastle and 2-1 home wins over Norwich City and West Brom have followed.
Pardew revealed several players are asking to be involved but that he will keep faith with the players who have served him so well in recent times.
"I have had a few knocks on my door this morning from players who want to play," he said.
"Steven Taylor, Hatem Ben Arfa, Papiss Cisse, Vurnon Anita, Jonas Gutierrez are all not playing at the moment, and they are desperate to play.
"We have got - which we didn't have last year - real competition for places, and that does bode well.
"I have empathy for them, but at the minute, they have got to wait for their chance.
"I wouldn't call them fringe players by any stretch of the imagination. I would class them as first-team players who are actually out of the team at the minute.
"They have an opportunity and, like (Mike) Williamson has proved, if you get an opportunity, then I will show faith and keep picking the player. Everybody has got an opportunity, an equal opportunity."
Pardew added that he has been "so disappointed" to leave French defender Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa out, but the form of Williamson had been too good.
Newcastle's next Premier League task sees them travel to Swansea City on Wednesday.