... amid further rumours the French connection at St James' Park are missing because they want a rest before the trip to Brazil.
Loic Remy is another with a mystery injury, obviously not picked up in any Premier League fixture.
And Moussa Sissoko is the third Toon player in the French squad unable to pull out of fixtures.
But all three will be available for Didier Deschamps' squad for Brazil, if not for Newcastle.
Has Newcastle boss Alan Pardew allowed the players time off?
Or are they simply pulling the piss out of him?