Cheick Tiote will be traveling back to Tyneside this week, after he played the full game for the Ivory Coast in their 3-0 win against Gambia on Saturday in World Cup qualifying, with goals from Wilfried Bony, Yaya Toure and Salomon Kalou.
Cheick Tiote – we still have work to do
Their next qualifying game is in June so Cheick will be back early this week to start preparing for the tough game at Manchester City on Saturday.
And with only 33 points from our 30 games played, Newcastle are certainly not safe yet, and Cheick is well aware of that, as he had this to say today in the Evening Chronicle:
“I think we have more work to do. You never know what can happen. The Premier League is so, so different to any other league in the world.”
“Any team can win four or five games and get out of it. So that’s what we will aim to do and then we will be safe.” “I always enjoy playing for Newcastle. Since my first year it has been a great place for me to play.”
“And I want it to continue that way for a long time.”
With our unfortunate last minute loss to Wigan, that has changed things a lot from what they would have been if we could have held out for the 1-1 draw. A draw would have seen us 9 points ahead of third bottom placed Wigan, who have a game in hand.,
But that is now 6 points and will be 3 points if Wigan win their game in hand, and they have a tendency of picking up points late in the season, as they again fight for survival.
Tiote is in his third season on Tyneside after joining us from FC Twente in the summer of 2010 for around £3.5M, but his place is under pressure at the moment from the likes of Vurnon Anita, the Dutch International, and of course we also have young 19 year-old Gael Bigirimana coming through quickly.
But that’s football, and Newcastle now have more competition for places than we’ve had in a long time – and that’s good.
We hope we can get something out of the game on Saturday – how do you think we’ll do?
You can also reach Ed at firstname.lastname@example.org