Alan Pardew admits Newcastle United haven’t recovered from the sale of Demba Ba.
The Senegal international scored 16 goals in 34 league matches in his debut season at St James Park, and he followed this up with 13 in 20 last term. This form, though, earned the interest of Chelsea, who triggered his release clause in the January transfer window to take him to Stamford Bridge for a bargain fee of just £7million.
Although the Magpies eventually pulled away from the relegation zone in the second half of last season, finishing five points above the bottom three clubs, they badly missed Ba who still finished as their top goalscorer in the Premier League despite his departure. And with Loic Remy, the Queens Park Rangers player, being the only attacking reinforcement this summer, Pardew admits he still needs to replace the 28-year-old.
“We are still short. We are short of Demba Ba,” the United boss told the Chronicle. “That’s what it looks like. And until Loic Remy is fit or we get another striker it will be a problem for us. There is nothing for me to immediately add. But it is a situation we need to look at very closely. We have Remy coming back and he is two weeks away.”
Newcastle were linked with former Sunderland hitman Darren Bent for much of the window, but the England international left Aston Villa for Fulham in a loan deal last week. Bafetimbi Gomis, the France international, remains a possibility, and reports earlier this month claimed a fee of £7million had been agreed with Lyon but agent fees were holding up a deal.
Tom Ince, meanwhile, has also been linked with a move to Tyneside. Reports on Wednesday claim Pardew is considering making a move for the Blackpool winger, who was sold by Liverpool for just £250,000 two years ago, rejected a move to Cardiff City earlier this summer, but he may feel more tempted by the North East giants.