Pardew admits the likelihood of losing him to the African Cup of Nations was a disincentive when he considered signing the Senegalese striker in the summer.
“His absence for the tournament did cross our minds before we decided to sign him and rightly so,” said Pardew.
“Any Premiership side which goes into that period struggling and loses a key player, it is going to hurt. Let’s worry about it when we get there. It could be six weeks with the preparation period.
“We have all that to come. We will have to battle through. You worry about your players because it is a really tough competition, really competitive.
“It is tougher than some of the other (international tournaments). All Premier League managers will be keeping their fingers crossed they come back in one piece.”