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Newcastle's stand-in skipper keen to stay united
CHEIK TIOTE has called for his team-mates on Tyneside to stay united to ensure Newcastle do not allow derby day disappointment to ruin the rest of the season.
The Magpies hardly have any time to recover from the frustration of losing 2-1 to Sunderland on Sunday because of an important Capital One Cup tie on Wednesday night.
Manchester City, who thumped Newcastle 4-0 on the opening weekend of the Premier League season, stand in the way of a place in the quarter-finals of the competition.
The progress made so far in the League Cup this season has increased its importance, with manager Alan Pardew well aware that Newcastle have not won a domestic trophy since 1955.
So if he can negotiate a challenging last-16 tie with Manchester City, who also lost 2-1 at Chelsea on Sunday, then suddenly a date at Wembley in the new year will suddenly look on.
But for Newcastle to turn in an impressive display to defeat the big spending Blues, Pardew will need to lift his players after the frustration of slipping to a second successive defeat to Sunderland at the beginning of the week.
Tiote, who has been the skipper in the absence of the injured Fabricio Coloccini, said: “It's important as the captain that you lead by example and I try to do things in the right way and lift the players in the right way during and after matches.
“I'm really disappointed that we lost to Sunderland, we stayed together and played well throughout the game, so it is not nice.
“But we have to make sure we all stay compact and are ready for the next game. We have two massive games against Man City and then Chelsea in the Premier League on Saturday, but if you do the right things and stick together then you have a chance. We will always have a chance if we do those things.”
No matter whether it has been players in red and white or black and white, losing a Wear-Tyne derby has often had negative effect on teams over the years from both sides of the county.
But Tiote is keen to make sure that does not happen this time around. He said: “We have to stick together and make sure we win our next game.
“We all know how good Man City are. We can't afford to think about the defeat to Sunderland for very long. We have to look to the next game now. Move on.”
Before he did put the defeat to Sunderland completely to one side, he was keen to stress his belief that Newcastle were unfortunate to concede an 84th minute winner from Fabio Borini.
The Italian's excellent finish proved enough to separate the two teams, but Tiote thinks the opportunity should never have materialised for him to score because a free-kick was wrongly awarded against the Ivorian for a clattering in to the back of Steven Fletcher near the touchline. “It is difficult to sum up my feelings because we were the better side, we lost the game to a sloppy goal. That's football,” said the 27-year-old. “We deserved more than what we got at Sunderland.
“We played better than Sunderland, but you have to take what comes. Then you move on and try to make up for it.
“Every time we play against Sunderland it is tough, but we did the right things on Sunday. We conceded a goal we did not deserve to concede. It was not a foul by me because I did not touch him.
“The referee (Lee Probert) gave a foul, Fletcher took the quick free-kick and they moved forward and scored. We can't go back on what has happened, we have to move on.”
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