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Shearer confident Magpies will flourish
FORMER Newcastle United striker Alan Shearer has backed Papiss Cisse to rediscover the goalscoring form that set the Premier League alight last season.
Cisse enjoyed a whirlwind first few months on Tyneside scoring 13 goals in 14 games after a £9million transfer from German side SC Frieburg in January.
However, the beginning of his first full season with the Magpies hasn’t picked up where he left off. So far, Cisse has notched twice – in the Capital One Cup defeat to Manchester United and the Europa League win over Bordeaux – and has looked a shadow of the player that stunned English football after his arrival.
In fact, the Magpies have largely had to rely on Cisse’s Senegalese strike partner Demba Ba to provide goals this season and he is the Premier League’s current top scorer with six in seven games.
However, Shearer believes there is no reason to be worried about Cisse’s form and is confident he will challenge his tally from last season.
“It’s the life of a striker,”
Shearer said. “It’s no surprise to me. Some games you’re going to score, others you aren’t. It is good he got a goal against Man United and a goal against Bordeaux.
“That will do his confidence the world of good. I wouldn’t be worried about him, it’ll come again.
“Every centre forward has a dry patch and it’s how you come through it that is more important.
“Hopefully because he got a goal against Bordeaux that will be the start of another great run like he had when he came last season.
“It’s not worrying that one is doing well and the other isn’t.
“As long as one of them scores it doesn’t matter.”Newcastle resume their Premier League programme on Sunday when they go to the Stadium of Light.
Magpies boss Alan Pardew is hoping to have both Fabricio Coloccini and Steven Taylor fit for the derby and, although he is having to move his squad around to accommodate both domestic and European competitions, Shearer still believes the Magpies can finish in the top seven.
“It will be harder to finish where we did in the league this year, because of having to juggle all the fixtures around but there’s still a decent enough squad there to finish in the top six or seven.
“The league is obviously the priority and they’ve had a fairly decent start, but it is a long hard season.
“He has moved the side around a lot and still got a result.
They squad is reasonably strong, I think it can cope.”
Pardew received a huge boost at the weekend when Ba and Cisse missed out on a place in January’s African Cup of Nations with Senegal after losing their play-off against Cheik Tiote’s Ivory Coast.
However, Pardew could be set to lose another of his strikers to the competition after Nigeria expressed an interest in calling up Shola Ameobi to their squad for the tournament.
Head coach Stephen Keshi said: “Shola is a good striker and he has a chance to be on the plane to South Africa.
“I’ve been watching him closely.
“He will definitely bring something different to the attack.’’