Following the frustration of letting a two-goal lead slip against Wolves, Newcastle United now have the chance to put things right in one of their most important games of the season – at home to arch rivals and north-east neighbours Sunderland.
Newcastle’s record in the Tyne-Wear derby in recent meetings is excellent. You won’t need reminding that Newcastle thrashed Sunderland 5-1 last time out at St James’ Park and were again victorious this season at the Stadium of Light thanks to Ryan Taylor’s brilliant free-kick.
[ad_pod id=’unruly-video’ align=’right’]
However, Sunderland are a different team these days under Martin O’Neill and despite losing 4-0 to West Brom at The Hawthorns last time out, the Mackems will provide a stern test for Alan Pardew’s men who are desperate for three points.
While an excellent team performance will be vital, one of Newcastle’s most important players will be Cheik Tiote. The destroyer will hopefully be back up to full speed after getting more than an hour under his belt against Wolves and his terrier-like nature will come to the fore.
Tiote has also been dubbed Mr T by fans – a nickname he’s happy with. The Ivorian stated: “I’ve seen Mr T. I like the nickname because he’s strong and tough so, for me, that’s a good thing. The gold chains though? That’s not me.”
Cheik Tiote aka Mr T has a message for Sunderland via the Toon Barmy blog…