Newcastle's injury crisis is so bad that manager Joe Kinnear has been forced to abandon normal training.
With the number of casualties reaching double figures after Sunday's 5-1 loss to Liverpool, Kinnear is struggling for players to face Hull in the FA Cup on Saturday.
"It's been more or less a case of canceling training and wrapping all of my players up in cotton wool, and then we will see if we can get 11 out for Hull," Kinnear said. "It's tough, but it's my job to keep them all up for it. I have to face it, and it is my job to lift whoever is fit to play."
Habib Beye, Mark Viduka, Obafemi Martins, Claudio Cacapa and Joey Barton are among the long-term absentees, while Jose Enrique, Nicky Butt and Shola Ameobi are doubts for the third-round fixture.
"The pain in the neck is that I won't know what my team is likely to be until Friday," Kinnear said. "We want a decent cup run and we are up for Hull, but it's dependent on which players we have."
Such were Newcastle's problems at the weekend that Kinnear was forced to include youngsters Tamas Kadar, Kazenga LuaLua and Andy Carroll on the bench along with Spanish struggler Xisco, whose arrival at St. James' Park during the offseason was one of then-manager Kevin Keegan's reasons for leaving in September.
Kinnear met managing director Derek Llambias earlier this week to discuss their plans for the January transfer window after owner Mike Ashley said he was abandoning plans to sell the club.
One of Kinnear's goals is keeping goalkeeper Shay Given, who has been linked with Tottenham and Arsenal.
"He's very happy here, he's very comfortable at Newcastle United," Kinnear said. "He won't be leaving _ he has no interest in that whatsoever.
"He loves the football club _ he's part of the city and that suits us because he's a world-class goalkeeper."