Cheick Tiote fully focused on keeping Newcastle United in the Premier League after putting move to China behind him

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Cheick Tiote is focused on keeping Newcastle United in the Premier League after putting his on-off move to China behind him.

The midfielder’s proposed £4million switch to Shanghai Shenhua broke down last month.

We didn’t want him to leave. He fights on the field. He never gives up, and he epitomises what we want from this team

Steve McClaren

A number of other Chinese Super League clubs, including Beijing Guoan Guangzhou Evergrande, were also interested in signing Tiote ahead of tomorrow’s transfer deadline.

But the 29-year-old is set to stay at St James’s Park until the summer.

Newcastle head coach Steve McClaren will be relieved when the Chinese window finally closes and ends months of uncertainty about Tiote’s future.

Speaking earlier this month, McClaren said: “We didn’t want him to leave (for Shanghai).

“He fights on the field – he genuinely wants the ball. He never gives up, and he epitomises what we want from this team.”

Tiote, now in his sixth season at Newcastle, has a year and a half left on his United contract.

Meanwhile, Newcastle’s Callum Roberts has been honoured for his goalscoring start to the year.

The talented forward has won the Barclays Under-21 Premier League player of the month award for January after scoring two goals in three games.

Roberts netted twice in a 4-2 home win at West Bromwich Albion and also scored in Newcastle’s 4-3 Premier League Cup defeat away to Everton.

However, the 18-year-old – who has made his first-team debut in last season’s FA Cup defeat to Leicester City – did not make the senior squad for last week’s training camp in La Manga, Spain.

United head coach Steve McClaren took 26 players to the training complex.

But pacy Roberts was not included in the travelling party.

The North Shields-born player is a candidate for a loan spell away from Relegation-threatened Newcastle.