If Cheick Tiote has had a difficult start to 2013-14, he has not been alone at Newcastle United.
The midfielder was delighted to see Papiss Cisse score his first goal for 11 matches at home to Leeds United in Wednesday’s League Cup tie.
Tiote hopes it can be the start of a run – but only at club level.
He said: “It’s great for Papiss as he has not scored for five months and I’m very happy he has managed to end that.
“When you are a striker and you don’t score for a while your confidence can go down, but he has not been too bad.
“He is a strong boy and has tried his best to get over it.
“Maybe Everton should be worried now! I hope so. I would love him to score and win the game.”
However, Tiote’s Ivory Coast are due to face Cisse’s Senegal in a World Cup qualifier on October 11.
Tiote added: “We will be thinking about that in the last game before we go but not now.
“We are focusing too much on Newcastle and our next games.
“We won the last time we met them and I hope it is the same story because everyone wants to get to the World Cup finals.
“Will I give him a kick in training nearer the time? No, no, well maybe a little kick. A little one.”
Cisse may have benefited from a less direct approach from Newcastle this season and, although they suffered a 3-2 defeat at home to Hull City in their last Premier League game, Tiote believes the Magpies have more substance as well as style this term, as four wins from five matches shows.
He said: “Long balls all the time make it difficult for the strikers to score. The best way to play is to pass the ball.
“We have to do everything right tonight and if we do that we have a great chance.”