The joint A-League top scorer has been in scintillating form scoring vital goals when it matters most to keep Newcastle in the hunt for a finals spot.

Wellington managed to take advantage of the talisman’s absence stealing a crucial 3-2 win at Energy Australia Stadium last weekend and Vidmar knows with Griffiths returning the Jets will be difficult to beat.

“He’s a fantastic player, no question about that,” said Vidmar. “He’s had a great season, I think he’s got 8 or 9 goals so far, a Socceroo call up which is great for him.”

“I’m sure he was sorely missed last week against Wellington because he’s a player who is capable of unlocking the door every now and then.”

The Reds go into yet another make or break game this season with a seemingly growing injury list with the news Kristian Sarkies will be missing for the remainder of the year with a blood clot in his arm.

Dez Giraldi is another player on the sidelines after experiencing heart palpitations and being admitted to hospital before the match against Sydney last week.

With recent events involving former Celtic midfielder Phil O’Donnell the Reds won’t be taking any chances with the former Empoli striker.

“He had a couple more episodes the day before yesterday,” said Vidmar. “So he’s going to continue to have a few more tests and see where he’s at.”

“I know my brother Tony went through that. It wasn’t heart palpitations but he had a blood clot in his coronary artery so I’m sure Dez will be feeling a little worried about that.”

“So far the tests that he has had have all come back negative.”

Local Fabian Barbiero and Young Socceroo Daniel Mullen, brother of the Reds squad member Matthew, have been signed as short term cover while Nathan Burns has returned to training but won’t be travelling to Newcastle.

Jason Spagnuolo however will be back in the squad after spending longer on the sidelines than first forecast with a knee injury and is raring to go if given his chance.

“I feel very good and the knee feels good,” said Spagnuolo. “And it’s a matter of getting some game time and run into the legs as obviously you’ve had a long lay off and get back into it again.”

“You always want to play and this is a massive game for the club, everyone wants to be out there.”

“This week at training everyone has been very upbeat. It’s a massive challenge and everyone is here because they love a challenge so we’re going to go out there and will give it everything we’ve got.”