By Sam Holden
Feb 1 (Reuters) - Manager Alan Pardew has warned Newcastle United may have to change their style of play following the sale of Yohan Cabaye after a crushing 3-0 Premier League defeat at home to local rivals Sunderland on Saturday.
France international Cabaye joined Paris St Germain on Wednesday and Pardew believes Newcastle will have to find another way to win without their key midfield player.
"A lot of the play went through Yohan, so maybe we have to change our style," he told reporters.
A Fabio Borini penalty and strikes from in-form Adam Johnson and Jack Colback secured a comfortable win for Sunderland and ensured Newcastle's poor run extended to one win in seven.
Newcastle had won four of 19 league games without Cabaye since August 2011 prior to his departure and with the Frenchman now gone, and striker Loic Remy banned for three games, Pardew needs to find the key to repeating their fine early season form.
"We have lost a good player and have another who scores goals sitting out. We have to find another way to play, maybe with a back-to-basics element to make sure the second half of the season mirrors the success of the first half," he said.
One man not struggling, especially in front of goal, is Sunderland winger Johnson. His first-half strike to make it 2-0 means he has six goals in his last four league games.
"I'm in one of those sort of moments," he said. "January has probably been the best month I've had as a footballer. I'm scoring goals and creating others. It's been great."
"I haven't felt any different. Things have started to go for me. (It's not as if) I wasn't trying anything before, it just wasn't coming off for me. Now it's turned, I'm enjoying it."
After another impressive display in the derby win, Johnson's form may have put him in contention for a spot in Roy Hodgson's England World Cup squad.
The 26-year-old said he would love the chance to add to his 12 England caps, the last of which came in August 2012.
"Of course I have missed it. It's the best thing of all to play for England. A few months ago I didn't think I had a chance, but maybe I do now. It's a good time to do it."
The win against Newcastle leaves Sunderland 14th in the Premier League on 24 points, two points above the relegation zone, while the hosts stayed in eighth spot on 37, nine points adrift of the Champions League qualifying places. (Writing by Sam Holden, Editing by Ken Ferris)
- Sports & Recreation
- Newcastle United
- Yohan Cabaye
- Alan Pardew
- Premier League