Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Magpies Idol's Fall Is Just So Sad to See; @EveningChron JOHN GIBSON

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Magpies Idol's Fall Is Just So Sad to See; @EveningChron JOHN GIBSON

Article excerpt

Byline: JOHN GIBSON

PAPISS CISSE has gone from golden boy to tarnished idol in alarming fashion.

His miserable season has been compounded by Senegal's elimination from the World Cup finals by Chiek Tiote's Ivory Coast.

Cisse played the full 90 minutes of the crucial second leg in Casablanca at the weekend but, as always this miserable season, failed to score and his last opportunity to take part in the finals of a World Cup appear to have passed him by.

Cisse will be 33 the next time the four-yearly jamboree comes around in Russia.

If United boss Alan Pardew, still waiting for Cisse's first Premier League goal of the season, was hoping his No 9 would return before the Norwich home game flying with both a goal and qualification in his kitbag to increase fragile confidence then his worst fears have been realised.

Cisse's fall from grace has been startling.

When he first arrived in January of 2012 from German club Freiburg he became the talk of the Premier League with an avalanche of goals.

Thirteen in 14 matches to be exact and each one seemingly better than the last, culminating in a world-class scorcher at Chelsea.

The whole of football was envious about what United had in their midst - but then came the first stutter. Cisse never found it easy in harness with Demba Ba and hated being pushed out wide.

Nothing, though, prepared us for this campaign which significantly started badly when Papiss became embroiled in a row with the club over the Wonga advert on his shirt.

His pre-season was disrupted in terms of training and playing and he has never caught up.

Cisse has not scored a solitary PL goal since the beginning of April when he notched the lastgasp winner against Fulham. The barren spell has now stretched to 13 matches and he has even been frozen out of the first team despite a lack of creditable strikers to lend goal support to Loic Remy.

Shola Ameobi, whose contract runs out at the end of the season when he could well be let go, has started ahead of Cisse in significant wins against Chelsea and Spurs. …

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