Belfast Telegraph

Pardew preaches power of nine

Newcastle boss Alan Pardew has urged the club's fans to be patient as new signing Papiss Demba Cisse attempts to handle the pressure of filling the club's famous number nine shirt.

The 26-year-old Senegal international completed a sensational transfer to the Magpies from German club Freiburg on Tuesday night on a whistlestop visit to Tyneside from his country's African Nations Cup training camp.

Pardew is confident he will cope, but knows he will need time to settle into his new role, and said: "He's not young, he's a good age. He is in the prime of his career. He has been under pressure in is career, so he understands it."

He added: "He is going to be surprised at the pressure that comes with this, but I think he will attack it in an honest way. He's an honest footballer and I think our fans appreciate that.

"I hope they have a little bit of patience at the start because he is going to find it difficult to get in the team, let alone be worthy of the jersey, so I hope our fans are patient with him and give him every opportunity."

However, Cisse himself insists he is well aware of the history of the shirt he has inherited, and is relishing the chance to prove himself worthy of it.

He told NUFC TV: "Yes, number nine. I talked a lot about that with the manager and he made sure I knew that the number nine is a number that is not a big number, it is a legendary number for this team.

"I promise that I will do what is required of me wearing this number.

"What I want to do is show I am worth the money to make people confident in me. They have brought me here and I don't want to disappoint them.

"I want to do my best to show them they were right to have confidence in me, and I want to pay them back."

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