Why Senegal riot causes Newcastle to burst open the bubbly
Demba Ba and Papiss Cisse will not take part in 2013 African Cup of Nations
Newcastle are 5/1 to finish in the top six of the Premier League again this season and their chances have been substantially boosted by Senegal being kicked out of the African Cup of Nations.
Senegal were already losing 6-2 on aggregate during the second leg of their qualifier with the Ivory Coast when trouble broke out in the crowd after a controversial penalty decision.
Ivory Coast supporters were attacked and missiles thrown from the crowd as the unrest escalated, causing the game to be abandoned.
Senegal were heading out in any case and so being disqualified hardly seems a punishment at first glance, meaning that further penalties are almost certain to follow.
However, these will not negatively impact Newcastle, who can only profit from having their two star strikers available for the entire season.
Demba Ba currently tops the Premier League scoring charts with seven goals and he proved last season that heading off to the African Cup of Nations can have a big impact on his scoring prowess.
Ba scored 15 goals before jetting off for a month in January and then only managed one goal upon his return in the final 15 fixtures of the campaign.
Thankfully, compatriot CIsse took over scoring duties and fired Newcastle to a fifth-place finish.
With both strikers available for the whole season, some punters may be tempted by the 33/1 that Newcastle do what they couldn’t do last season and break into the top four.
Another development from Senegal’s disqualification may be that Newcastle are peppered with offers for Ba in January, as the African Cup of Nations will have put off some potential suitors from chasing his signature.
Liverpool are one club that are known admirers of the former West Ham striker and given their below-par start to the campaign, an offer has a greater chance of being forthcoming in January.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.