Newcastle's Cheik Tiote impressed by new midfield depth

Chieck Tiote
Tiote has 19 caps for the Ivory Coast

Newcastle's Cheik Tiote has said the club's new signings will provide a much needed depth to the squad.

The 25-year-old will be joined in midfield next term by new arrivals Sylvain Marveaux, Yohan Cabaye and Mehdi Abeid.

He told BBC Newcastle: "There are a lot of possibilities now in midfield which is good.

"Last season was difficult when people were injured or suspended and it was not the same team."

Having moved to Tyneside from Dutch outfit FC Twente last summer, Tiote made 26 appearances in his first season with Newcastle.

He continued: "It was a really good season for me because it's not easy to come and do this - so I'm happy for this season and now I have to compete for next season."

Tiote's impressive performances at St James Park last term led to him signing a long-term extension to his contract in February.

The Ivorian, who played in the 2010 World Cup, was one of the Magpies stand out players last season, a particular highlight being his equaliser in the club's dramatic 4-4 draw against Arsenal in January.

"I'm happy at Newcastle," said Tiote. "If I work hard I can do better than last season because there are new players and the squad is bigger.

"I'm hoping to start the first game of the season and then we'll see a new team for Newcastle."

Striker Demba Ba is the fourth new arrival to St James Park so far this summer, with boss Alan Pardew aiming to increase that number over the coming weeks.

"It'd be nice to have another striker in the group and obviously we're working hard on that," Pardew told BBC Newcastle.

"We're still chasing one or two targets and enquiring on other targets if those two fall down.

"But where we are right now is ahead of the game. When I look at other Premiership clubs a lot of them have done no business at all."

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