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Newcastle United will have to battle hard in this summer’s transfer window

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Kevin Nolan will have his work cut out if others around decide to departFormer Newcastle manager Chris Hughton can be credited with making one of the buys of the season, the £3.5 million pounds spent on Cheik Tiote has proven to be a fantastic piece of business. The Ivorian has made an instant impression on the Premier League, not to mention a long list of his fellow professionals’ shins with his no nonsense tackling. After the 1-1 draw with Blackpool on Saturday, Newcastle have all but secured their Premiership status and the role played by Tiote has been instrumental in aiding this process. As well as his sheer determination, a trait that has been welcomed with open arms by the St James’ faithful, Tiote is also blessed with a cool head when in possession. His slick passing and ability to break up opposition attacks makes him the all round package for a holding midfielder. Therefore, if Newcastle are to build on this season they need to ensure Tiote remains a Magpie over the summer.

Although the player himself has no intention of leaving the club, his quality has not gone unnoticed by Premier League big boys Chelsea and Manchester United. With United reportedly in the market for a new centre midfielder over the summer Tiote has all the attributes to slot into a top four side. Having signed a new six year deal in February, this ought to be enough to reassure the fans Tiote will be spending his future on Tyneside. Unfortunately we all know that’s not how it always pans out; you only have to look at the Andy Carroll transfer. Upon signing for Liverpool the former Newcastle number nine maintained he had never wanted to leave the club and his hand had been forced. Newcastle can expect their fax machine to be busy with enquiries for the resolute Cheik Tiote over the summer and my worry would be what if a similar outcome to that of Carroll transpires?

Although Tiote has already shown his commitment to Newcastle by signing a new deal and supposedly snubbing a deadline day deal to Chelsea in January, would a £20 million bid, for example, be too much for the Newcastle hierarchy to resist? Tiote’s commitment to the club will have been music to Newcastle fans’ ears, in the same way a huge offer could just as easily be music to Mike Ashley’s ears! Keeping hold of the man whose goal in the 4-4 draw with Arsenal secured the greatest comeback in Premier League history is a necessity for moving Newcastle in the right direction. Tiote is the heartbeat of Newcastle’s midfield and when he’s not in the side it’s proven to be to Newcastle’s detriment. Tiote has missed eight games this season and of those eight games the Magpies have only picked up maximum points on one occasion, the 4-1 victory over Wolves.

In his first season in England Tiote has taken to the Premier League by storm, and his adaption to the Premiership is much like Luis Suarez at Liverpool. They have both already warmed the hearts of their respective fans, and are legends in the making. Tiote’s combative style of play has suited the English game and his twelve yellow cards have shown his willingness to put his foot in. You’d be hard pressed to find a Newcastle fan who hasn’t been delighted from what they have seen from the tough tackling Ivorian. There are no doubts over Tiote’s dedication to the club and I hope Alan Pardew and Mike Ashley wouldn’t be stupid enough to listen to any potential offers for him over the summer. With £35 million available to spend I’d implore Newcastle to buy top class players, not sell one.

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