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Tiote Ready For The Fight

11 Feb 2013 12:45:30

Tiote Ready For The Fight

Cheick Tiote is back from the Africa Cup of Nations and ready to get back to winning ways with Newcastle.

The 26-year-old found himself on the bench against Tottenham Hotspur, with James Perch taking his place.

Cheick Tiote: "The squad has changed since I have been away and it was good for us to sign some new players because we have more strength and balance in the squad.

"That can only be a good thing.

"I cannot just come straight back in. The team have been doing well while I was away and got a couple of good wins.

"All that matters is the team, not who is playing. If we are winning games you cannot expect just to come back and play from the start."

 

SPURS 2 NEWCASTLE 1

TOTTENHAM: 25. Hugo Lloris 28. Kyle Walker 20. Michael Dawson 33. Steven Caulker 16. Kyle Naughton 75' 7. Aaron Lennon 8. Scott Parker 19. Mousa Dembele 90+3' 23. Lewis Holtby 69' 2. Clint Dempsey 11. Gareth Bale Subs: 24. Brad Friedel 5. Jan Vertonghen 10. Emmanuel Adebayor 69' 13. William Gallas 22. Gylfi Sigurdsson 29. Jake Livermore 90+3' 32. Benoit Assou-Ekotto 75'

NEWCASTLE: 1. Tim Krul 26. Mathieu Debuchy 2. Fabricio Coloccini 27. Steven Taylor 3. Davide Santon 14. James Perch 82' 7. Moussa Sissoko 4. Yohan Cabaye 18. Jonas Gutierrez 86' 11. Yoan Gouffran 58' 9. Papiss Cisse Subs: 37. Steve Harper 8. Vurnon Anita 13. Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa 22. Sylvain Marveaux 58' 23. Shola Ameobi 86' 24. Cheick Tiote 82' 25. Gabriel Obertan

Are we as good as high flying Spurs?

To be honest with you, on Saturday yes we were, apart from one difference ... they had Gareth Bale!

I remember a game at Bolton when David Ginola had just signed for us.

The Frenchman was head and shoulders above anyone who was on the pitch that evening, and he orchestrated a win out of nothing.

Everything that was 'class' on that pitch, came from Ginola's boots - and at White Hart Lane I was similarities in Gareth Bale.

The Welshman lived up to his billing as Tottenham's own Cristiano Ronaldo after firing Andre Villas-Boas' side to an entertaining victory over Newcastle at White Hart Lane.  Villas-Boas was at pains to point out the similarities between Bale and Ronaldo during the week, and the Welshman put in a performance the Portuguese would have been proud of today.

Bale beat Tim Krul with a 25-yard free-kick to open the scoring for the Londoners and he then sealed the win with a superb break-away goal that ended with him slotting the ball between the Newcastle goalkeeper's legs.

Newcastle dominated large parts of the game but Bale, like he has done so many times this season, swung the game in Spurs' favour.

The 23-year-old, who scored the decisive goals in Tottenham's last two matches, now has 19 goals for club and country this season. Only the athletic brilliance of Krul prevented him taking home the match ball for the second time this season.

How the watching Roy Hodgson must wish he was English.

Newcastle's goal came from Yoan Gouffran, who was later carried off on a stretcher with a serious-looking leg injury.

The win stretched Tottenham's unbeaten Barclays Premier League run to 10 matches and put the north London club in to third, although Chelsea will have a chance to move ahead of their rivals if they beat Wigan later.

Villas-Boas and Pardew fell out last season, but there was a strong sense of bonhomie as they embraced on the touchline before kick-off.

Bale was in no mood to show the visitors the same love. Just 70 seconds had elapsed when he burst down the left after a clever one-two with Lewis Holtby, but Davide Santon cut the Welshman's cross out before Clint Dempsey could convert.

Three minutes later and Spurs had the lead. Fabricio Coloccini clattered into Dempsey 25 yards out and Bale stepped up to deliver a Ronaldo-esque free-kick which dipped over the wall past a diving Krul.

Spurs dominated the rest of the opening quarter with some scintillating attacking football.

Mousa Dembele penetrated the box and rolled the ball back to Holtby, who came within inches of scoring his first goal for the club. Thereafter Newcastle came back in to the game. Lloris saved from a Gouffran curler and Cisse directed a free diving header just wide of his compatriot's goal.

Holtby momentarily raised the hopes of the home crowd, but Newcastle remained on top and the seemingly inevitable equaliser came with 24 minutes gone.

Sissoko galloped down the right on a Newcastle counter and pulled the ball back to Gouffran who beat Lloris via a deflection from the diving Michael Dawson.

Spurs had two penalty appeals turned down. The first - when Aaron Lennon's shot struck Santon's arm - looked credible, but the second - when Bale's volley brushed Mathieu Debuchy's shoulder - was not.

Gutierrez whipped a cross in to the box to find Yohan Cabaye, but the Frenchman mis-controlled and Lloris came to the rescue.

Tottenham failed to up their performance straight after the break.

The game came to a pause for seven minutes as Gouffran received treatment for what looked like a serious injury.

Kyle Walker clipped the forward's right shin on the halfway line and he needed oxygen before being carried off on a stretcher. He was then taken to hospital for an x-ray.

Bale looked to be Tottenham's best hope of finding a winner. The Welshman, who fired his country to victory over Austria in midweek, picked the ball off Lennon and fired a low cross in to the box but it was cut out before Dempsey could score.

Bale came forward again, charging at the defence before firing a powerful shot which Taylor blocked bravely.

Taylor went from hero to villain moments later, however, as his mix-up with Coloccini allowed Bale to race through the Toon defence and fire between the legs of Krul to make it 2-1.

Caulker had a chance to seal the win moments later with a free header when Krul went walkabout, but the defender nodded wide.

Only Krul's finger-tips prevented the Welshman from adding a third after he raced through from a long punt down field before firing a powerful volley at goal.

Cabaye put in a terrible tackle on Dembele, stamping on the Belgian's ankle in a late attempt to win the ball. Spurs' players demanded a red card, but Phil Dowd issued just a yellow.

Newcastle threatened to equalise in the second of seven added minutes through substitute Shola Ameobi, but Lloris saved well to deny the striker.

Krul's acrobatics denied Bale his hat-trick twice in added time, but the winger did not mind. He had already done enough damage to see off the Toon.

 

Source: Newcastle United Mad


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