Alan Pardew issues challenge to Newcastle strikers

Alan Pardew has challenged strikers Shola Ameobi and Leon Best to prove Newcastle can cope without star man Andy Carroll.

The 22-year-old England international has missed the last four games with a thigh injury, and is also expected to sit out the next three weeks with the damage showing few signs of healing quickly.

Carroll's 11 goals to date this season have made him one of the club's stand-out players in the bid to retain their Barclays Premier League status, and his loss might have proved hugely significant.

However, Ameobi's strike at Wigan and Best's hat-trick against West Ham three days later each secured three precious points in his absence, and it was Ameobi who created the goal which took the Magpies to within seconds of derby victory at Sunderland last weekend.

With Peter Lovenkrands and Nile Ranger providing support, Pardew is hopeful that he has enough firepower to cope.

Speaking ahead of tomorrow's tough home Barclays Premier League clash with fifth-placed Tottenham, the manager said: "Especially with Leon, he has produced in the two Premier League games.

"The challenge is in front of him to produce that level.

"Shola, as we know, can play for this club. He has shown that over many years.

"They have the shirts at the moment and if they produce the same work-rate they did at Sunderland, they have every chance of keeping them."

Carroll will not be the only absentee as Newcastle attempt to halt a free-rolling Spurs bandwagon which has seen the Londoners put together a run of 14 games in all competitions with just one defeat since they lost 4-2 at Bolton on November 6.

Key midfielder Cheik Tiote serves the second leg of a three-match ban, while Alan Smith is likely to miss the rest of the season with an ankle injury and Steven Taylor and Dan Gosling have joined Hatem Ben Arfa and Ryan Taylor on the casualty list.

In the circumstances, Pardew is desperate to persuade owner Mike Ashley to loosen the purse strings and allow him to bring in reinforcements - short-term moves for Stephen Ireland and Shaun Wright-Phillips have been mooted after the club's interest in the likes of Sebastian Larsson and Jay Bothroyd came to nothing.

But in the meantime, the Magpies will attempt to gain revenge for their 2-0 defeat at White Hart Lane on December 28 with what they already have.

Pardew's spending power, or lack of it, is in stark contrast to that afforded to opposite number Harry Redknapp to enable him to rebuild his squad since he launched what was initially a rescue mission in October 2008.

He said: "They are title challengers, you can't get away from that.

"They have some outstanding players, as they proved against Manchester United last week.

"Harry's been fortunate that he's had good finance to strengthen the team, and he very rarely makes mistakes in the transfer market, and that's why they've got so many options.

"It's frightening."

Second-half goals from Aaron Lennon and Gareth Bale did the damage in the reverse fixture last month in what was just Pardew's third game in charge, but the Magpies boss believes his side did not cause enough problems for their opponents, something he intends to remedy tomorrow.

He said: "They are a very forward-thinking team that wants to attack you. But when we played them last time, offensively we were really poor.

"Hopefully on Saturday, we are going to give Spurs' back four a bigger test and see if that stands up.

"On occasion it hasn't, so we have got to put them under pressure and try to force some errors."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
peopleMathematician John Nash inspired the film Beautiful Mind
News
Richard Blair is concerned the trenches are falling into disrepair
newsGeorge Orwell's son wants to save war site that inspired book
Life and Style
Audrey Hepburn with Hubert De Givenchy, whose well-cut black tuxedo is a 'timeless look'
fashionIt may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
Arts and Entertainment
The pair in their heyday in 1967
music
Life and Style
fashionFrom bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine