Alan Pardew has insisted that he is working as hard as he can to keep star player Demba Ba as a Newcastle player next season.
After a blistering first season at St. James' Park where the striker hit 16 Premier League goals, the Senegal international has become a target for Manchester United, Arsenal and Liverpool.
The revelation that Ba has a release clause in his contract of around £7m has only added to interest and left boss Pardew fighting off the circling clubs.
But the manager has revealed that he is doing everything he can to ensure the player remains on Tyneside as one half of the unstoppable forward partnership with his fellow countryman Papiss Cisse.
"I want Demba to stay," he said.
"He's a player and all I'm focusing on is making sure he's a Newcastle player next season."
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