Cheick Tiote has made a great comeback into the first team at Newcastle, after Rafa Benitez has tried to use the experienced players he has available at Newcastle to try to avoid relegation.
In fact Rafa is using both Papiss Cisse and Cheick Tiote as starters at the moment – and that was after they had both been accused of being bad eggs in Newcastle´s dressing room – a charge that seems to have been completely unfounded.
Cheick Tiote – reinvigorated by Rafa Benitez
That claim was originally made by Express writer John Richardson on September 20th after Newcastle had started the season with only two points from their first six games of the season and we had just lost 2-1 at home to Watford the previous day.
All kinds of journalists were only too willing to stick the boot into Newcastle.
Cheick has been in good form for Newcastle in the last few vital games and Benitez seems to have reinvigorated the 29 year-old defensive midfielder whose contract at Newcastle runs out a year come June.
This is what Cheick has said today:
“I am glad I still have chance to help the club stay up. It would be really sad to see Newcastle in the Championship because it is a massive club. That is why we fight to stay up.”
“If we get three points from that we can think ahead – confidence will be high and we will get more belief.”
“We still believe now and that is why we will fight every game.”
“Maybe the fans want us to beat Alan Pardew, but for the players we know what is in our mind and we don’t think of Alan Pardew, we just have to win the game.
“I had a really good time under Alan Pardew, but that is in the past and we just have to win this game.”
Newcastle can still avoid the drop if we can somehow win our last three games – two of which are at home.
Certainly the fans are expecting a win on Saturday.
Rafa will be giving his press conference tomorrow, although we are not expecting any good news on the injury front with Colo and Janmaat still out and Yoan Gouffran and Steven Taylor coming back from injuries.