Vurnon Anita has admitted that Newcastle are missing the creative influence of Yohan Cabaye.
Cabaye, 26, has not played for the club since the 1-0 defeat against West Ham on November 11 after picking up a groin injury during the home defeat to Swansea City that required surgery.
With manager Alan Pardew recently confirming that Cabaye will be out of action until early February, Anita believes his team-mate's ability is sorely missed.
"Yohan is a really good player for us, an important player, but unfortunately he is not here right now, he told the Evening Chronicle.
We must deal with this and other players need to step up. Yohan is more attacking player than our other midfielders. He brings a lot of creativity, just like Hatem (Ben Arfa), who showed that at Fulham.
"We definitely miss Yohan and we all hope he will be back sooner rather than later because he's a top player." Those sentiments were echoed by James Perch, who has been utilised in midfield in the absence of French international Cabaye.
"It is really difficult when you have a player like Yohan on the sidelines because the guy is of genuine international quality," Perch added.
"The gaffer has had to do something and he has put me, Cheick [Tiote] and Vurnon [Anita] in there and I think we have done okay. We were never happy when we lose and we can never say we played too well.
We were looking to get better every game if we get the chance to play together over an extended spell."