Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew is concerned over striker Papiss Cisse’s failure to score this season and is assessing his options.
The 28-year-old has started all four of Newcastle’s Premier League games in 2013-14, but has failed to find the back of the net, leaving Pardew concerned as a number of players battle to replace Cisse in the side.
But the Senegal international looks likely to be given another chance to get off the mark against Hull City on Saturday, although Pardew is keen to stress there is competition for places.
“I think that (Cisse’s barren spell) is a concern and we have worked hard trying to find avenues for Papiss to get that goal,” he said.
“Papiss is focused but he knows with every game that goes by when a striker’s not scored, it’s difficult for them.
“Their mood changes, some games you can see they’re up and determined to get it right, other times they’re down but I just generally sense this week that he’s in a good place.
“Certainly on his side he is working hard and he needs to really concentrate now because he will come under pressure for sure if he doesn’t score in the next couple of games.
“We have (Loic) Remy, we have (Yoan) Gouffran, we have players and that is the competition you need at the top. So therefore a goal for him would be a welcome addition to the squad.
“His place is not under immediate threat although I think I have to say Gouffran has really impressed and he’s not in the team at the minute, Sylvain (Marveaux) is in a good place and they are the options I want.”
Newcastle will be gunning for their third Premier League win in a row when they come up against Hull on Saturday, with Hatem Ben Arfa seeking his third goal in so many games.