Newcastle United boss Alan Pardew is delighted to have his main strikers back this week.

Leading scorer Demba Ba is due to make his return after African Nations Cup duty against Aston Villa on Sunday.

His Senegal team-mate Papiss Demba Cisse could also make his debut, and Pardew said: "That's just going to bolster us for Sunday.

"We've done brilliantly. When the guys went away everybody thought it was going to be difficult for us, and we've had games where it hasn't gone well.

"But we've had two big victories, QPR and this one, and both those victories have been about resolve and diligence and grit, and I think we can attack the second half of the season.

"We find ourselves fifth above Arsenal and Liverpool. It's incredible really but we're safe as well, and that's the big barrier.

"We must never get away from that, the type of club we are, get that under your belt first, which we have, so now we have the games we've got left to let our hair down and see what we can do."