At times last season, it was embarrassing to see the gap between Papiss Cisse and our often pedestrian midfield, particularly when for the umpteenth time in a match the ball would be hoofed up to the number nine to try and win the ball and protect it before that pedestrian midfield sauntered up to support him.

PC0008_Papiss_Cisse_Newcastle_United_NUFC (2)Of course when I say ‘try and win the ball and protect it’, that totally isn’t Cisse’s game and his efforts to do so were less than enthusiastic. Having said that, the most important thing for any team must surely be to play to the strengths of your strikers, or in our case ‘striker’ last season.

Even worse were the attempts to play Cisse wide right, at least when you had Demba Ba through the middle you could understand the trade-off up to a point. However, once Ba had left for the bright lights, it was horrific to see our best/only chance of goals playing out wide to accommodate Shola through the middle, on a number of occasions.

Looking forward though, Alan Pardew is clearly desperate for the day when he can pair Papiss Cisse with another quality striker, this is what the manager had to say yesterday as we await the identity of who this mystery forward will end up being;

“It is unusual but nice to be able to talk about Papiss as a football player after all that’s gone on. I must say the 2 days of training he has put in have surprised me.

He’s looked in really good fettle and will have at least half a game at St.Mirren.

I’m pleased it’s all been sorted and we’ll bond round him and support him. He’s an important player so we’ll try and get the best out of him.

It was a taxing situation for him but he’s fine, we’re a resilient bunch in football and you have to bounce back in our world, or you’ll be in trouble.

Papiss can play a big role for us this coming season and I fully expect him to kick on and make a positive contribution.

He was a little isolated at times last year, on his own up front, but if he can get a relationship going with whoever might play alongside him, I can see him thriving.”

6 comments
wor monga
wor monga

The rumour is totally groundless…speculation regarding any Sissoko transfer would have to be strictly on Ashley’s terms due to his length of contract, and with his known ability in the PL… that won’t come at those piss farting amounts we’ve seen bandied about (£9m), by the amateur rumour mongers we’ve read so far…which makes this pretty much a non-story.

Hughie
Hughie

Sissoko's defensive play was a major problem last season -he does not appear to want to put the yards in, frequently marking space and reluctant to compete in tackles or for headers. His attacking play is often of the headless chicken variety.I would lose no sleep if he went. 

Phildene
Phildene

Indeed he id and think he's playing went off the boil quotes bit was due to the rubbish coaching here, which now has improved so might change Sissokos mind about moving.

1957
1957

A good player on his day but there have been too few over his time here. He has continually agitated for a move and linked himself with all sorts of clubs over the last two years with his desire for champions league football. Unless I'm mistaken Liverpool aren't in the champions league and despite their signings I doubt they will make it this coming season given the teams above them will be improving too. A move for money, surely not!

mactoon
mactoon

Not a bad assessment to be honest. He is awesome when he applies himself