ALAN Pardew must decide if he wants to bring in a new midfielder following the news that the influential Dean Hammond could be out for a fortnight.

The Saints boss had been looking to sign Winchester-born Doncaster midfielder Brian Stock even before Hammond picked up an Achilles injury in Saturday’s 1-1 draw at Millwall.

Pardew claimed that the two clubs could not agree on a fee for 28-year-old former Bournemouth star Stock.

It is believed the Championship club want around £800,000 for Stock, who returned to the Doncaster side at the weekend after being out of action since September with an ankle injury.

With Saints having so many games coming up, the timing of Hammond’s injury is not great.

If he does miss two weeks he will sit out the first leg of the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy area final against MK Dons, the FA Cup fourth round tie with Ipswich, and the league matches with Brentford and Stockport.

Pardew said: “He’s got an achilles knock that might keep him out for a couple of weeks.

“It’s a blow because he's an important player for us.”

Pardew made a straight swap when Hammond went off at Millwall, bringing on the experienced Paul Wotton.

The former Plymouth captain hasn’t started a game since the FA Cup second round tie at Northampton at the end of November, though he has been a regular sub since.

Pardew also has the option of playing Lloyd James in central midfield alongside Morgan Schneiderlin.

Stock, meanwhile, started his career at Bournemouth, making his league debut in the January 2000.

He played 145 league games and scored 16 goals for Cherries before joining Championship side Preston six years later.

A year later he teamed up again with former Cherries manager Sean O’Driscoll at Doncaster for £150,000.

He is under contract to Rovers until 2011.

Stock, who was 28 on Christmas Eve, made his international debut for Wales against Russia in a World Cup qualifier in September last year.