Steve McClaren wants Cheick Tiote to play big role at Newcastle United

Newcastle United's Cheick Tiote made his first start of the Premier League season against Norwich City.

Steve McClaren has told the Chronicle that he believes Cheick Tiote can have a big role in his Newcastle United side this season.

Tiote has struggled with injury so far this campaign, but he made his first start of the new term in Newcastle's 6-2 win over Norwich City on Sunday. 

Although the Ivorian was subbed off at half-time, after picking up a yellow card early on, McClaren still believes he will be important as the season progresses. 

“We are trying to get Cheick involved again because we think he can be a big player for us," he said. "He wasn’t going to last the game – it was his first game, he’s trained for two weeks.

“We just felt we need to start him – his energy is quite infectious – and we knew he wouldn’t last and we just brought Vurnon Anita on for a bit more stability.

“But it’s good that Cheick gets 45 and he’s involved again.”

Tiote's performance against Norwich was a decent one, but he will have been frustrated to pick up a booking so early on. 

The midfield enforcer dived into a needless challenge, and he could have few complaints when the referee did brandish a yellow. 

Thankfully for Newcastle, Anita did well after being introduced, and the Magpies were able to claim their first victory of the season, in what was a pulsating match.

Newcastle will now head into the derby game against Sunderland at the weekend with confidence, and another victory could launch them out of the relegation zone. 

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