Alan Pardew has given Newcastle United the belief to win the big games. Now they must maintain their standards against some of the Premier League’s lesser lights, says Cheick Tiote.
The Magpies have beaten Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea in their last two matches, results Tiote puts down to the “trust” manager Pardew has shown in his players.
Now the onus is to maintain that form when the players return from the international break for the visit of Norwich, followed by a home game against West Bromwich Albion.
“We’ve got a very good manager,” explained stand-in captain Tiote. “He is open with the players and he talks all the time with us.
“He has put his trust in us and when we play tough games like Tottenham and Chelsea it gives us the belief we can go out and win. You need to believe in yourselves because if you don’t have confidence it is difficult to win.
“The manager gives us that and he tells us what we have to do on the pitch as a team because not only one player can win, we have to do it
together and that is the key.” After two such impressive wins, Newcastle could have been forgiven for wanting another game this week, but the international schedule has dictated otherwise. Tiote thinks it’s a good thing.
“I think it’s important to have a little break because we don’t want to think now everything is easy,” said the midfielder, suspended from Ivory Coast’s World Cup play-off with Papiss Cisse’s Senegal. “It’s important to have a one-week break and then when we come back we can focus again. We need to keep the momentum we have built in the last couple of weeks.
“We just need to carry on doing the same things. Not many teams can come to White Hart Lane and win.
“It shows the result against Chelsea wasn’t a one-off and if we continue to do the same thing every week we will have a chance to win.
“I cannot say we are going to finish fourth and fifth. It’s too early. We just have to try to do everything we did in the last two games and we will have a chance of winning more games.”
Newcastle owed Sunday’s win to a terrific performance from keeper Tim Krul, who made 14 saves in the 1-0 victory. “I think that’s the best I’ve seen Tim play since I came,” said Tiote.
“He was fantastic and the best player on the pitch by far. I hope he can continue to play like that because we will win many more matches. We also defended well as a team.
“When you play against a top team you need to be compact and that’s what we did.
“I think at the moment we look very strong on the pitch and we look compact. It is not easy to come and win at Spurs. It was difficult but if we stay as a team and have that togetherness we can win.
“I told him he was fantastic. There’s nothing you can say apart from thank you because he was the best player on the pitch and I think he will continue to play like that. For me he is one of the best in the Premier League. He is a top, top goalkeeper and we are lucky to have him in our team.”