Pardew hoping Ivory Coast beat Senegal to soften January blow to Newcastle squad

The Magpies boss has revealed he would prefer to lose just one player in Cheikh Tiote than two should Demba Ba and Papiss Cisse help their country to the Africa Cup of Nations
Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew has revealed he is hoping Ivory Coast can overcome Senegal in Saturday's Africa Cup of Nations play-off.

The Senegalese go into the game 4-2 down on aggregate, with Magpies duo Demba Ba and Papiss Cisse hoping to overturn that deficit and help their country to the tournament held in South Africa in January.

14/1 Ivory Coast are 14/1 to beat Senegal 2-0 with bet365
But Pardew has expressed his desire for the Elephants to maintain their lead so that he will only lose one player, Cheikh Tiote, in the middle of the season.

"Senegal v Ivory Coast is a massive game for this football club," Pardew told the Daily Mirror.

"If Senegal win, we will lose both of them, so in the next window we would have to do something about it.

"I will either lose one world class player or two world class players, so I'd rather Cheikh bangs a couple in - then I'll lose just the one player.

"If it's the other way round, I have no problem with that - I'll have Cheikh Tiote on board.

"It's an interesting fixture, and I think it'll be hard [for visitors Ivory Coast] to hold on to a two-goal lead but we'll see.

"Senegal love Newcastle and if they heard the Newcastle manager is rooting for another country they wouldn't be happy, so I am completely neutral!"