Justice For Cisse
Papiss Cisse is going through one hell of a Premier League scoring drought, going back to the Fulham game in early April, yet if anyone deserves a goal, it’s him.
Footballers are human too, so who knows what is going on in the mind and life of Cisse?
I imagine he was as baffled as the fans about that one.
Even great no.9s like Alan Shearer go through their droughts yet find the goal trail again and are usually better for it, having had to dig deep for inner strength or even adapt their game.
Shearer, fortunately, had Sir Bobby Robson to put an arm around his shoulder when he took over from Ruud Gullit to build up his confidence again and told him to play in the danger areas again.
If goals are the lifeblood of strikers then confidence is so important to their striking health – it’s what they thrive on and what allows them to bang them in without thinking, or a lack of it means missing chances.
The Cisse that arrived from Freiburg was unplayable for the 4 months of the season from his stunning debut goal at home against Aston Villa, to that unbelievable Goal of the Season away at Chelsea, which had Real Madrid sitting up and taking notice.
That was the real Cisse playing with unbridled confidence as Newcastle did that year in the glorious 4-3-3 with Ba, Cisse and Ben Arfa. Crucially, the whole team was playing well, scoring goals and winning matches and it provided the platform for his collection of worldies.
Last season, he and Newcastle didn’t hit the heights for various reasons yet he still bagged 13 goals and it would have been a more than respectable 20 for the season if not for a total of 7 disallowed goals.
I”ve written before on the subject yet two or three disallowed goals are unlucky, 3 or 4 is strange yet 7, especially when they were later proven to be onside or over the line is very suspicious if not evidence of conspiracy.
The disallowed Sunderland equaliser was a £60M decision that ultimately kept them in The Premier League by a linesman paid £600 a match and led to riots, as make no mistake, we’d have went on to win that match from 1-1.
Equally dodgy was the brace of goals Cisse had denied against Metalist at St. James’ Park, especially the first one. In unrelated news, Metalist were banned from The Champions League for historic match-fixing charges in August….
The two against Benfica that were ruled out, prevented Cisse and Newcastle getting the opportunity to face a Chelsea side they had beaten 3-2 at home in last year’s game of the season, yet the pattern was obvious – Newcastle and Cisse were not being allowed to score goals.
Consider also the unheard of FIFA decision to ban him from the Swansea game last season. For whatever reasons these things happened, think about the effect this would have on a goalscorer’s mind – as well as giving him an undeserved reputation for being caught offside.
Firstly, everything you touches turns into a goal then every other goal you score is wrongly ruled out.
I E-mailed the Guinness Book of World Records at the end of last season who have a new record ready to be picked up by Cisse and Newcastle for the Most Disallowed Goals In A Season – 11 including a couple of legitimate offsides and Demba Ba’s over the line against West Ham.
Cisse’s goals that actually were allowed to count last season helped keep Newcastle in The Premier League, Alan Pardew in a job, and took us to us to The Quarter-Final of The Europa League, no mean feat.
Yet footballers and strikers are a superstitious bunch and only Allah knows what Cisse was thinking when goals weren’t being allowed to stand.
Did he start to question himself or the rightness of what he was doing?
As indeed he did when Wonga took over and it clashed with his religious views. Nobody is saying Cisse is a saint, yet I’m sure he strives to live a good life and be a good role model as his charity work shows.
The alternatives to Cisse up front through the middle are Gouffran, Remy and Shola.
Recall Gouffran’s away performance at Morecambe if you can, though he was so anonymous you may have trouble and was duly hooked for Shola who soon scored.
Shola needs more games yet injury looks to be saving him for The World Cup.
Remy started through the middle at Everton and didn’t rise to the responsibility or the occasion and looks better wide left.
Cisse, even when he’s not scoring, remains our strongest focal point through the middle and defenders concentrate on marking him which opens doors up for Remy & Ben Arfa.
He is still contributing, assisting several of Remy’s goals, and is always in the thick of the action whenever we score like the Ben Arfa goal at Villa.
We haven’t scored a Premier League goal when Cisse hasn’t been on the pitch and Gouffran’s last minute miss against West Ham would have been swept in by Papiss for one of his trademark late winners.
He got one in the 94th minute for Senegal against Ivory Coast last week proving he is always alert and if, anything, gets more dangerous as the game goes on as a string of ‘Cissetime’ winners proved last season.
While all the pre-match, off the field talk against Liverpool has been about the anti-Ashley march, there has been an attempt to get a confidence-boosting chant going for Cisse in the 9th minute.
Whatever your views on the regime, supporting the lads on the pitch is paramount so join in the ‘Pa-piss Dem-ba Ci-sse’ chant and show him support. He’s had a hard year but if we can get him back scoring like we know he can then the sky’s the limit for him and Newcastle.
Please join the Petition for Offside Technology which would have meant he’d have scored 20 goals last season and who knows, we may have won The Europa League instead of the fans winning the worldwide trending topic for #ColosParty that night, yet being left out the real victory parade.
20 seconds of your time will go a long way to making the beautiful game a fairer one.
You can follow Stuart on Twitter @ultrastartime
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