One good piece of news this week for Newcastle fans, was that Demba Ba is still at the club, and did not move away from Tyneside via that £7M release clause in his contract, so that’s a big relief.
Demba Ba – in action against Braga last Saturday
Demba Ba has looked very sharp in pre-season, even with Ramadan having started, and we should see the Senegal striker start the game today at Den Haag in Holland.
And it seems that Alan Pardew had few doubts he would still be here, and we have to believe the manager had a good talk with the player when he reported for pre-season training in early July, and that the Senegal man told Alan he had no wish to leave Newcastle.
Certainly that’s what Ba told anybody who would listen in the summer, but we still had reports about him possibly moving to other clubs in England, Turkey and even Russia.
It’s a relief that little saga is over, and it started in January when Harry Redknapp told everybody about the release clause, and why he did that we have no idea, but he’s now out of his job at Tottenham and Roy Hodgson is the new England manager – so harry’s in limbo at the moment.
Alan Pardew has told Ba that he will generally play him up front in the center next season, and that will be in a 4-4-2 formation or some slight variation of that, but we’ll have two strikers up front and his partner will be Papiss Cisse, and we’re hoping they will form a good partnership together.
This is what Alan told the Newcastle Journal today about the Demba Ba affair:
“I never really lost any sleep over it. I genuinely felt that Demba likes playing for this football club and it suits him.” “It certainly suits us – he looks terrific in pre-season and I’m looking forward to seeing him run out against Spurs, hopefully.”
“I think, like all strikers, they breed on goals. It’s nice to see him getting the goal the other night because strikers need goals. Goals make different players and I wouldn’t put it past Demba to get 18 goals before Christmas. I know he will score goals, as I know Papiss Cissé will.”
We still need another striker before September rolls around, and that could be Andy Carroll or Loic Remy of Marseilles, but we do need a fourth striker to back up Cisse, Ba and Shola Amoebi for next season.
And come to think of it, we also need a right back and center-back too.