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Sam Allardyce celebrating Christmas with a good news about United's Republic of Ireland road to recovery update. Damien Duff is now close to a return to action after scoring in yesterday Newcastle's friendly match 4-1 defeat to Boro. But Allardyce will not have Duff to feature for Newcastle's first-team this season.
“Damien played another 90 minutes and is getting stronger, but I don't think he will be involved at all against Derby at the weekend,” Allardyce told the Northern Echo.
Duff is suffering a dislocation in the middle of his foot against Portsmouth back in April.
He's have passed the toughest test of his football career with the latest injury, which according to his surgeon was the first of its kind that he's ever seen happens to a professional footballer.
Big Sam hoped Duff would be able to play against Derby, but he added later that he just have to be patient with him.
Steven Taylor, Abdoulaye Faye and Shola Ameobi were all included in the friendly match but Sam Allardyce thought Steven Taylor is the only one who is likely to come back into the team for the Derby game.