Newcastle's Harper out for 12 weeks

Newcastle expect goalkeeper Steve Harper to be out of action for up to 12 weeks after undergoing shoulder surgery, the Premier League club announced today.

The 35-year-old suffered the injury in a first-half clash with Everton striker Jermaine Beckford during Newcastle's 1-0 away win at Goodison Park on Saturday.

Beckford was booked for a challenge that saw Harper land on his left shoulder and then have to be carried off the field.

"Following a shoulder ligament injury sustained in United's game against Everton last Saturday, Steve Harper has undergone a successful operation which took place yesterday," a Newcastle spokesman said.

"It is likely that Steve will be unavailable for selection for a period of around 12 weeks."

Harper is now set to be sidelined until mid-December at the earliest, meaning Tim Krul can look forward to an extended run in the first team.

Krul replaced Harper at Goodison Park and was also in goal for Wednesday's 4-3 League Cup third round win away to Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.