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Tired Cabaye worries Pardew
18 Apr, 2013 4:09 PM GMT
Alan Pardew admits he is conscious of the toll Newcastle's arduous season has taken on key man Yohan Cabaye.
Newcastle were recently knocked out of the Europa League at the quarter-final stage, having started their campaign back in August, and the manager believes their progress may be catching up with them as the season draws to a close.
The players have looked increasingly weary in recent weeks, especially Cabaye, who has made 30 appearances domestically and in Europe despite several injury setbacks.
Pardew admits the French international may be suffering from burnout.
"Cabaye is probably my biggest worry," the Newcastle manager told reporters.
"The rest of them are really sound physically and mentally.
"But Cabaye is our best player in terms of intelligence on the pitch and he needs to play. That's why he has played almost every minute."
The 27-year-old has been a revelation since moving to St James' Park in the summer of 2011, and was instrumental in helping the side to a fifth-place finish last season.
However, both he and his team-mates have found this campaign a lot harder going, and Cabaye recently admitted that he had been struggling both mentally and physically after two intense seasons as well as last summer's trip to Euro 2012.
Nevertheless, the Frenchman is sure to be called upon as Pardew's men attempt to bounce back from last weekend's 3-0 derby defeat to Sunderland, with their Premier League survival still not secure.