Newcastle Club Focus – Cisse inspires another Toon victory

Newcastle moved a step closer to securing a top six finish with a third consecutive win in the league. It was another polished performance from the Magpies who were in the end comfortable 2-0 winners over an out-of-form Liverpool side. Papiss Demba Cisse was once again the star man as he continued his prolific start to his new career in England. The result sees Newcastle remain level on points with Chelsea and also ten points clear of their closest rivals in seventh place. The biggest fear for the Magpies, if they are unable to secure a fifth place finish in the league, will be relying on Liverpool to defeat Everton in the FA Cup semi-finals.

At the moment there is little love lost between the two clubs with Newcastle becoming almost a feeder club for Kenny Dalglish’s side. Andy Carroll and Jose Enrique both left the north east in controversial circumstances with the latter citing a lack of ambition as a reason for leaving. With Sunday’s result now leaving an 11 point gap between the two teams it would take a brave man to bet on the Reds achieving a higher league placing. The game ended in disaster for Carroll and Enrique as the former stormed down the tunnel following another forgettable performance while the latter ended up in goal for the final ten minutes.

The money generated from the sale of Carroll has certainly helped to rejuvenate Newcastle from mid-table hopefuls to European contenders. The likes of Demba Ba, Yohan Cabaye and most recently Cisse have all arrived for almost a third of the transfer fee and become part of a much more fluent team. The signing of Cisse appears to be a very shrewd move with the Senegalese hitman appearing good value for his £9 million fee. The striker has now scored seven goals in just seven games and appears to be a worthy recipient of the number nine shirt. For somebody who is still adapting to life in a new country and is still learning the language his scoring record is remarkable.

It will have come as a massive relief for Alan Pardew that his new look defence came out of the game with a clean sheet. With Liverpool selecting three forwards it was always going to be a big test although Tim Krul had few important saves to make. James Perch was once again solid in another new position but may have disappointed a few people with his reaction from Pepe Reina’s ‘headbutt’.

Pardew was delighted with his team’s effort as they were superior in all areas of the pitch. Aftert he game he told Sky Sports: “Liverpool had a lot of flair on the pitch and we dealt with it well. The two centre-halves for us were magnificent and we got goals. We have said all along that the front four or five of ours will get goals and we just have to make sure we are disciplined and defend. It was an outstanding performance from us.”

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