Sunderland were not in running for Papiss Demba Cisse insists Martin O'Neill
Friday 20 January 2012
Sunderland boss Martin O'Neill has insisted Newcastle did not snatch Senegal striker Papiss Demba Cisse from under their noses.
The Magpies landed the 26-year-old Freiburg frontman in a big-money swoop on Tuesday after speculation had linked the Black Cats with a move for him.
That was a cause for great delight on Tyneside with Alan Pardew's men sitting in sixth place in the Barclays Premier League table while Sunderland continue their climb away from trouble.
However, O'Neill is adamant that Cisse was never in his sights amid claims that the player snubbed the Wearsiders to head for their arch-rivals.
He said: "News was filtering through here that he had turned us down - I'm afraid we hadn't made any enquires for the player at all. Good as he is, we hadn't done so."
On the prospect of closing the gap to the high-flying Magpies, O'Neill admits his side are focusing on their own battles rather than what their neighbours are doing.
He said: "Newcastle are doing brilliantly and of course, that might not please every Sunderland fan - it might not please any of them - but we can't do anything about it at the moment.
"We have to look after ourselves, and we will try to do that as best we can in the next couple of months."
When teaching the meaning of Christmas backfires
Latest in Sport
Paul Scholes: Manchester United vs Liverpool - I don't understand why Brendan Rodgers was not more attacking against Basel
Jesus Christ plays for Chelsea - that's what one in five children thinks
Transfer Talk: Nemanja Vidic to return to Manchester United; Hazard to leave Chelsea; Sunderland want Radamel Falcao
Frank Warren column: Don't bet on Amir Khan landing pay day against Floyd Mayweather
Manchester United transfer news: Kevin Strootman move edges closer
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
Shock poll shows voters believe Ukip is to the left of the Tories
New era of cheap oil 'will destroy green revolution'
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Ukip founder Alan Sked and Nigel Farage 'begged Enoch Powell to stand as a candidate'
Ukip candidate jokes about 'shooting peasants' in racist and homophobic rant