North-East latest: Pardew feels sorry for Newcastle striker, Sunderland signing admits things have been tough

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We bring you the latest news from Newcastle United, Sunderland and Middlesbrough.

Pardew says that he feels sorry Emmanuel Rivière

Alan Pardew says that he feels sorry for Newcastle United striker Emmanuel Rivière.

The Frenchman was bought in the summer to score the goals to elevate the club up the table, but has not hit the back of the net yet and Pardew admits that he isn't ready to lead the line at St. James' Park.

“Manu has had to carry that shirt, and he’s not ready yet. That’s why I felt sorry for him," Pardew said to the Shields Gazette.

Pardew pleased with Cabella

Alan Pardew says that he was impressed by the performance of Remy Cabella in Newcastle United's 2-2 draw with Hull City.

Pardew admits the Frenchman hasn't lived up to the £8 million fee that the Magpies paid to sign him from Montpellier yet, but the Newcastle boss still considers him a vital component for the side and he is pleased to see him nearing top form. 

“I was really pleased with Remy Cabella," he told the Shields Gazette. "He is such an important player for us, and I don’t think up to now he’s produced a performance that warrants his tag or the money we spent."

Jack Rodwell admits it's been tough

Jack Rodwell admits that his return to first-team football with Sunderland has been tough.

The England international has barely played for two years following a move to Manchester City, but has been thrown straight back into the starting line-up at the Stadium of Light and he has revealed adapting to playing regularly again has been a challenge. 

"It's been hard," Rodwell is quoted as saying by Sports Mole. "Fitness-wise, I've been on the training field every day, but it's match fitness. You can't buy that. You can train as much as you want, but it's not the same. The anticipation and just being alert comes with games."

Brown expecting even contest

Sunderland defender Wes Brown says that Stoke City are on a level par with his side this season.

The Black Cats take on Stoke in the Capital One Cup tomorrow night and Brown is clearly expecting a close contest.

"They’ve got a lot of new players, they’re on a par with us," he admitted to the Chronicle.

Karanka wants to keep run going

Middlesbrough boss Aitor Karanka is determined not to allow his side to rest on their laurels after climbing into the playoff spaces.

Boro have won their last three fixtures, but Karanka is still not satisfied and he wants to keep their momentum building. 

"That’s three straight wins and we have to keep going, there’s another game on Tuesday and then Saturday. We’re always looking ahead," he said to the Hartlepool Mail.

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