The Newcastle manager Alan Pardew is still trying to solve the strike partnership dilemma that exists at Newcastle – and while both Senegal strikers Papiss Cisse and Demba Ba are good strikers, they hardly complement each other, because their styles are so similar.
Papiss Cisse and Demba Ba together last season
In all honesty we would like Alan Pardew to try a 4-3-3 partnership again, but if he put Demba Ba on the left wing, it would probably bring discontent up again, since apparently he promised Ba in the summer he would play him up front in the center.
And we all know Ba is precariously positioned at Newcastle because of that release clause in his contract – and if Alan Pardew played him out wide – then that could be it for Ba and Newcastle – and he could want away in January.
But according to the newspapers, his agents are already talking to other clubs about a potential move for him in January – how’s that for adding a little stability at Newcastle?
Alan Pardew insists he hasn’t altered the system he plays from last season:
“We have not changed the system.” “Demba played many games defensively out there but then Demba would join him as a pair during the games. I don’t think that’s it. I think Cheick has had this disjointed season.”
“Cabaye has a groin problem and that has meant he has not been at full capacity, so that’s been a big thing behind Cisse.” “Last year, we coped no problem with having two in midfield. We could play two strikers.”
“Sometimes we asked one of the strikers to defend the full-back when the opposition had possession. We coped with three central midfielders with Cheick and Cabaye.” “And quite rightly because they are world-class players.”
“This year though, the midfield is an area where we haven’t controlled it.”
The big problem with Newcastle this season is in central midfield, as Alan points out, and we’ve been unable to get a grip on games like we were able to last season, and that was true even when Yohan Cabaye was fit.
And that has seen Newcastle skip midfield and lot and put high centers into the box, but we don’t have Andy Carroll on the books any more.
We’d love to see Cisse and Ba starting yo score goals frequently when they are partnered together, but we’ve only seen both score in a game just twice since last February – and one of those was Papiss’ freak goal against West Brom.
Maybe the two will score again in our vital game tonight against Wigan – w certainly hope so, but maybe sometime soon, the Newcastle manager can play 4-4-3 with Cisse out on one of the wings?
We think that’s worth a try.
What do you think?
You can also reach Ed at firstname.lastname@example.org