Allan Saint-Maximin is set to make a shock return to the first-team picture - despite Steve Bruce's fears that he was set to miss up to seven weeks after returning from the club's Covid list.
The winger has not played since November before he contracted the virus and spent the festive period back in France.
But after returning to Tyneside and undergoing tests, Bruce was delighted to welcome him back.
Bruce said: "The good news for everybody is Saint-Maximin is in the squad. He's came through and done well.
"There's no doubt that will give everybody a huge lift especially in the forward area.
"It's good that he's back. We hope that he will play some part.
"He's a player that gives us a lot of flair.
"He gives you that pace and we have missed him in terms of creativity."
United are still waiting for the green light on Fede Fernandez but Bruce hopes his defensive partner will return.
Bruce said: "Fab Schar, we hope will make it."