Cissé Over the Ba?

Is Ba being left behind?
On the back of one of our most impressive attacking performances this season, much praise has been handed out to our three attackers of last weekend; Hatem Ben Arfa, Papiss Cissé and Demba Ba, and rightly so!

Surely everybody connected with the club would be happy to see repeat performances. Or would they? What about Demba Ba?

Papiss Cissé’s arrival at the club has coincided with a loss of form for Demba Ba as has been widely reported. This could be down to any number of things: loss of confidence at the ACoN, not having as much pressure on his shoulders, a loss of motivation, distraction due to constant rumours about his future, or maybe he’s just tired from having to bear the load alone for so long, and it’s a temporary blip.

Regardless he is invaluable to this team, and Newcastle management have work to do to keep him at the club beyond this summer. Coming in from a wide left role against West Brom, Ba’s chances on goal were understandably more limited that those of his compatriot Papiss Cissé. While it’s undoubtedly good news to make sure our new striker is confident and scoring, how will Demba feel about being moved out of his favoured central position after all he has done this season?

He will still pick up goals and for now, of course, he will be happy to help his club and compatriot find success, but if played there until the end of the season, doubt could creep into his mind about his future role. The success of that system against West Brom will ensure that it is tried again, but with Cissé showing an ability to cross when he drops wide Pardew could possibly run with Papiss in the wide role.



Both thrive on loose balls around the box and both want to be in and around those areas. They could yet form a formidable partnership as a front two, and perhaps the fact that this performance came when playing 4-3-3 was a coincidence, but maybe we can only accommodate one player in that role. If that’s the case, Pardew will need to decide whether to give the role to our more proven performer or our promising new no. 9 finding his feet in the Premier League.

Demba seems like a great character and willing to do what is necessary for the sake of the team, but he will inevitably see himself as a striker. So, although playing out wide may help Newcaslte’s results now, with the expected offers to come in this summer, could playing Ba out wide be to Newcastle’s detriment long term? With question marks already hanging over his head, the option to play in his favoured role elsewhere would be further incentive for clubs looking to entice him away.

Is he willing to sacrifice personal glory for the good of the club?

Thanks to Dubtoon for sending this in!

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72 thoughts on “Cissé Over the Ba?

  1. I feel that ba was unlucky in the two goals of cisse. He was the one who could have scored the brace and not cisse.

    The first goal when ben arfa passes the ball,Ba went down and slide,in hoping he got the ball and scored,but the ball travelled too quick and somehow reaches cisse instead.

    The second goal cisse scored was also unlucky to ba. He could have stand on and scored but fell down allowing cisse to score.

    What i feel is that,ba “goal drought” is just short term. I expect him to score against the bindippers. 😛 😛

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  2. Also wide left of three was his position at Hoffenheim I read somewhere. Could be wrong.

    No probs with the three of them rotating as the game demands, pulling the defences out of position and converting whatever comes their way.

    Would like to know how our chances created and conversion stats are with Cisse in the team.

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  3. Dubtoon good read mate, I just thinkBa has been a wee bit unlucky thats all, he will soon find the net again.
    But he wont get back to scoring the same amount as they will be shared between them now.

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  4. He scored 7 in 12 for West spam on the left of a front three. It’s his high standards that he has set which has made this drought stand out. Good job we have Papiss as he’s took over the goal scoring burden.

    Long live the 4-3-3

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  5. Not trying to be a downer, but I feel like Cisse was brought in to replace Ba so that he can be sold for a boatload of cash in the summer. I would hate to see him go because he has been amazing for us this season and I’ve really come to love him as a player. He’s humble, works his ass off for the team and does his talking on the pitch. Feel like he would be a great role model/mentor for Ranger (if for some reason we keep him around). My only preference is that if he does leave, he goes outside of the EPL because I would hate to see him line up against us.

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  6. in addition to above, it took two top saves from Ruddy to keep him off the scoresheet against Nowrich. So while he hasnt scored recently, he’s still been playing very well, so not the loss of form you’re making it out to be.

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  7. There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that Ba is the better finisher, so he will score when he is given the opportunity. Cisse’s one on one against WBA, the lob chance and one on one against Norwich are all chances I have no doubt Ba would’ve buried. Cisse is clearly an instinctive finisher, whereas Ba is an all round hero. I would say Ba has missed all season as many as Cisse has in his six games – the derby penalty, a gilt edged chance at 1-0 against city and a header I can’t remember against who. It’s not as if Ba is suddenly missing chances so he’s not lost confidence, it’s just that whereas before, like when we had Carroll, every attack was intended for him now we have another outlet. Ba will score I have no doubt of that!

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  8. I’m not worried about his lack of goals as he is still working for the team and creating stuff for others. He likes to sit deeper anyway apparently so having a kind of spearhead to our attack other than him allows him to do it.

    Not worried at all mate

    Good read Dub 🙂

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  9. Prem- i’d like to see them allowed to rotate as well, they can all put chances away and pull defenders out of position. Create a few gaps and any of them can punish.

    I agree as well that Ba will still score, he very nearly flicked one into the far post against Norwich too but for a good save. His chances are more limited thoguh. I don’t have a problem with that as more will be created for the other two to put away and as long as one of them puts a few away its all good.

    My only question mark is whether Ba feels he needs to be the main man taking all the pressure and scoring the goals. Spreading the burden is great if he can cope mentally with playing a different role and maybe not getting all the plaudits himself? Is his motivation just to score goals? If so he might drift in and out of games. I don’t know what he was like before he came here, and he seems to be a down to earth guy who’ll put in the work for the team. I don’t personally think that’ll be as big of an issue as someone else coming in and offering him the chance to be the main striker.

    All footballers have egos and i just wonder would it be silly of us to take that away from him. He needs to be loved, as pardew said, and he is by the fans, i just hope he’s still valued as much by the fans and management if he starts to score a little less.

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  10. Demba Ba hasnt had a lack of form at all. HEs had a lack of goals, but he is still playing very well and in most cases has had a great impact.

    The reason he wasnt scoring, is that the chances are falling to Cisse. Before he was always the striker on the move in the box (as Shola/Best never were the best at movement), but now Cisse is there getting on the end of them.

    He’s still just as important to our team, his link up play just behind Cisse is still top notch. Im sure if Cisse wasn’t in the team, he would be scoring.

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  11. Robby – i completely agree, just playing devil’s advocate a bit i guess. He’s still performing and will still pick up goals. My question is whether he’ll be happy enough with that when someone else comes calling

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  12. All depends on who comes calling and how much money they are offering though ultimately. Same goes for every single player on the team sheet, regardless of what they say in the press about how much they love it

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  13. Simple, swap position when need arise. We will not always employ 433 all the time, it depends on the team we play, injury, form etc.

    But 2_goal brought up an interesting point. In one on one situation, which toon players you want it to fall to? I would choose Ben Arfa, Shola, then Ba.

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  14. There were times on Sunday when Cisse ended up in the right back position and whether it was on purpose or accident they did occasionally swap over, but I see what you mean, will he be happy doing the hard work for Cisse to finish off? I can’t see why not.

    It could work for us as well, if he scores only 2-3 goals between now and the end of the season, will other teams think twice about buying him?

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  15. I think it should help that he and Cissé are close as well and he’ll want to help his friend find his feet and lay the groundwork for a few of his goals

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  16. LaneLane I agree with you, I think Ba has an agreement in place to let him go, maybe PSG.
    I believe Cisse is his replacement and was brought in earlier than expected, hence no CB .

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  17. Love to keep both they could be some strikeforce.

    However im not the only one who has noticed that mr pards has never said how he loves watching the partnership flourish …. does he know that he will go in summer for £25m? 😕

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  18. I agree with Robby Bobson, and I thought the same myself. Will other clubs look at him now and perhaps wonder if his goalscoring was a flash in the pan?

    Personally I don;t think it is, but then I’m not the one judging whether it is worth paying silly money to sign him and pay him over x amount of years when his knee could explode at any time…

    There were times on Sunday when they all switched anyway. Ba would have got onto the end of what was the third goal had a West Brom defender not just barged him out the way anyway, so he’s getting into the right positions still.

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  19. Good article Dan-

    Although Ba might be out of scoring form but he certainly isn’t out of form. He was a menace on Sunday.

    As others have siad, I don’t think we will be in a 4-3-3 all of thetime. I think pards will at times revert to 4-4-2 whic will allow Ba to play up top.

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  20. @18. I think teams would be scared topay what he is actually worth, but that 7M clause is probably worth the risk for big club with a bit of money.

    Still- I don’t see him leaving, ewspecialy if end up in europe. He realy seems to love it at Newcaslte. The again, if someone offers you 100K a week…..

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  21. LST/Toonsy/Robby – should we not being working under the assumption that he has a buy-out clause in his contract? If Stoke were willing to pay £7m before the medical, surely even if he doesn’t score another goal this season, all the top clubs will be willing to pay £7/10m? In which case it’s all down to the player.

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  22. I reckon that this is much ado about nothing. It probably hasn’t even crossed Ba’s mind that there is this potential problem (in the minds of some fans). As has been said the chances have fallen to Cisse but could just have easily gone to Ba as a few nearly did on Sunday. I suggest flagging it up is not a good idea – be careful what you wish for.

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  23. Dub – I can appreciate that but I think our chairman is too business savvy to fall for that one and would take a major bid for it to be accepted

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  24. Tony – i don’t think it is an issue at all, just flagging up that it could be if it continued till the end of the season. The 433 may even be ditched after the next game. Far from wishing it to happen, just wondering if its something management should be wary of and protect against

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  25. LST – i just think someone would’ve come out and denied it at this stage, or at least some of the local journalist say they didn’t believe there was a clause. Put it this way to MA and see if it makes sense: Ba’s agents say its not negotiable not to have clause without a major signing bonus or an extra 20k a week. From MAs point of view he’s already taking a risk on an injury risk who has only had 4 month in the PL. Is it worth paying him an extra million a year on the chance that he might be worth £15m? I thought he was a good signing and could get us 12-15 goals but no one predicted he’d have 15 by new years

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  26. I don’t believe this figure of £7m buy out is as simple as some people think. Looking back at our attempt to prise Taylor(?) away from Swansea, was there not a supposed buy out clause sum there? That turned out to be only the trigger for allowing a potential buyer the chance to talk to the player. Swansea weren’t compelled to sell at that figure. In the event as we know the full back decided to stay at Swansea even though we made a very good offer. I believe, maybe over optimistically, that something similar will happen with Ba as there seems little doubt that he loves his relationship with both players and fans at Newcastle, and even though he would no doubt earn more at some of the richer (not bigger) clubs, he is certainly pretty well paid here too, particularly if the rumours regarding his new contract offer are true.

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  27. Tony that would be a nice surprise alright 😈 and definitely possible but the taylor saga was after we’d signed Ba so i doubt we’d thought of that particualr loophole.

    We have something in there though if there is a clause. I tend to trust in what Pardew said, make him feel loved, sing his name, and he’ll find it very difficult to leave, that’s where our fanbase comes in as a big advantage. I’m sure he will be rewarded with an improved contract in the summer anyway if he’s open to staying. We’ve shown that we’ll give better terms to players playing better than their wage.

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  28. I would have said his goals have dried up since he has returned from the ACoNs rather than the arrival of Cisse to be honest.
    I’d think it has come as a bit of a relief to him as well, I mean he was literally the only person who looked like scoring for us at one stage.
    He certainly doesn’t look like a player who’s nose is out of joint like, far from it.
    Cisse is an enigma at the moment, Ba is playing with a fellow countryman and Benny upfront and his goals will come back.
    Who knows what will happen to him on the summer but he has always put a shift in for us and I’d be happy to see them both in our starting 11 next season.

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  29. Dub the problem is if it is PSG that come in for him because he won’t be able to turn them down 😕
    I said oh and Batty aswell when we signed Cisse that he was Ba’s replacement only the chance to get him came early.

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  30. Not sure I agree with that Big Dave. we tried to sign Cisse in the summer, however Frieburg were unable to secure a replacement. When they signed Seb Frie in January Cisse signed for us the following day. Personally I believe Pardew when he said that they went after Cisse as the first choice replacement for Carroll. I think that Ba was a bit of opportunistic business that made sense because Cisse was not coming and we needed another striker anyway. I also think pardew may have been thinking of either a front three with Cisse, HBA and an other or HBA playing off Cisse when he referred to HBA’s role and the move towards a more attacking regime.

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  31. Nice read Dub. I’m not at all worried about Ba’s goalscoreing form or his attitude to being the main man . He said himself that he never wanted the number 9 shirt and that Cisse was worthy of the shirt ,he so say even had a big hand in Cisse coming here by bigging up the club ,fans and area.
    I love him ,Cisse and Benny up front togeather , but like Dave and others have said I do fear he may be off in the summer to PSG as they are rich now and his boyhood club too. I could just about handle him going to PSG but not an English club.The question is who to replace him if he does go .For me it has to be a player who we don’t lose to ACON as we already have a problem with Tiote and Cisse . 🙄

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  32. Good article Dubtoon. I don’t think any of us know what will happen to Ba in the summer. Most including me hope he will stay. He is a fantastic worker and always makes himself available. Another creative attacking midfielder would have him in on net more often. Have to agree with others that say he is a better all-round player than Cisse and that Cisse is an instinctive scorer who doesn’t do as well if he has too much time on the ball. The 2 seem like such a natural strike pair though and with Ben Arfa growing in confidence we should see many more goals from the 3. I see Shearer thinks we’re not ready for a Champs league position yet. Afraid I have to agree but a couple of seasons in the Europa league will do us a lot of good.

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  33. Off topic but what does everyone think about the Chelsea rescheduled fixture.That gives us 3 rest days play on the 4th for both Chelsea and Citeh. A bit much at such a vital time of our season . Plus we have a gap of 12 days with no game in april now, so we get to see everyone else play and all because Chelski make the semi’s aargh.

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  34. It’s be mental to get rid of Demba. Sort his contract out and get him signed up. We could be looking at a top 6 front three in the whole of Europe if these boys get to knock each others games more

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  35. This kinda links it with what I was getting at in the last article…Might he be unhappy at not being the main man anymore? Its possible, but then judging on his style of play-and his willingness to constantly drop into midfield to get the ball even when he was the main striker-I don’t think he’d mind so much. The fact that Papiss is a friend should also help.

    One positive is, with Ba in the shadow, hopefully interest will cool and he’ll be less likely to leave this summer….. 😛

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  36. Oh, plus I don’t think Cisse would be much good on the wing…His “finishing” is top class, although he lacks composure. In other areas of the game-as in technical ability and first touch, well I think Ba is better, and Barfa much better, so keep him in the middle and play to his strengths.

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  37. I agree with those that have said Ba seems to enjoy dropping off, you can see the delight on his face when we score, he is a stand up guy and i genuinely don’t think he cares who is scoring as long as the team is.

    I don’t believe the transfer clause for a second. I know old Redknapp claims it is there but would you rather sign an ageing Saha or Ba? Chelsea and of course the scousers have also been in dire need of a striker this season, Chelsea especially surely would have gambled 7 Mill on a big physical striker, that suits their style of play, to guarantee champ league..?

    Also I don’t believe Ba is having a dip in form, he is still heavily involved in most good things we do.

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  38. [email protected] – Can’t believe that , one loss all season ,Christ that’s arrogance on a whole new level . What a prat . 👿 Would love it if we smash em.

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  39. Team ethic not demba ethic. who cares what he thinks the team is more important, which i have heard him say a number of times.

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  40. Could it be that Demba’s drought is down to the fact that he’s not playing a lone, central game but is now playing well left of centre?

    Perhaps he should be playing closer to Cisse….. or would that mean new tactics are needed??

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  41. I like Big Dave and Lanelane thought Cisse was Ba’s replacement, obviously I hope not but if the release clause thing is true then it’s just down to if someone will take a gamble on his knee because the price is allegedly low.

    This is his first full season in England and has only been professional for 5 years so he will only get better as long as his knee holds out. Even though he’s looking tired (which is probably due to the amount of running is does up top which I have been impressed with especially against the big teams) he’s still helping create chances and getting in the right positions. Cisse’s first goal brushes Demba’s studs and he could have gone on the end of the third goal. We just have to stick with that formation and attitude.

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  42. @Alex

    That would be a good deal i would take that. I would be dssapointed for a while though but i would get over it 😀

    As we have seen before (with Carroll) one man dosnt make a team.

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  43. He has been unlucky with a couple of chances, it would be nice to see him get 20 for the season. Since Cisse has arrived though he is not the main man anymore and that must have taken some pressure off. I think he will still get goals he has just been unlucky, but Cisse will always be top scorer, I disagree that he isn’t as good a finisher. That Norwich keeper is about 6ft 5” Not easy to lob the ball over and the one-on-one with Foster was harder than it looked because he closed the angle well and left him nothing to aim at really, he would have had to go round him and he couldn’t because defenders were right behind.

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  44. DJG-

    I was pretty impressed with Cisse’s ability to aim and finish clinically in the Baggies game. Especially on the third goal. His sense of positioning was perfect, and the nonchalant way he just crept into the area kept the defenders attention elsewhere. Then BAM. I’m sure those West Brom defenders were wonderin’ where in the hell he came from haha!

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  45. @50

    We lost our 4 best players last season and are in a far better position. So losing one player wont unstablise the team now will it?

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  46. Evil spot on stability and keep added better players to our best players and we can be a real power again within a few years, I don’t really think our 1st 11 is that short as it is, but we need a bit of strength in depth 😉

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  47. @51 – noticed that. I can figure out that when he says we will lose we will win, but he never predicts a win. So what does a draw prediction mean? we go into administration and get relegated?

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  48. If we can keep our players and the general formation we’d have one of the best front free in the league, a mixture of skill and power is unstoppable :mrgreen:

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  49. I think he is taking a break because he dosnt want to say how shit a manager mark hughes really is. 😀

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  50. Big Dave
    That’ll mean a red card against Arsenal then, what are the bets that he’ll make a reference to the 4-4 match? Poor Joey always living in the past when he played for a proper club that was fun 😆 :mrgreen:

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  51. Dave – I’m all for the new way of running this club but we can’t constantly expect to sell our best players (not sure we actually will to be honest) if we want to be successful on the pitch also.

    That’s why I don’t understand people saying they would be happy for Tiote to go for £20 million plus…do they not realise it was cost about £20 million to replace him like for like any way? So what’s the point in disrupting the team? 😆

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  52. Evil some think that everone is replacable aslong as the price is right, I don’t. As you say we could sell Tiote for 20 mill and replace hime there is no guarantee he will settle or he could take a long while to settle.
    IMO the best way is to keep your best players and add to them

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  53. Andy I think Hughes has had words with him and told him to stop fuking about on twitter and try to help the team out.
    I have no doubt he will want to leave when they go down.

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  54. Lol you two have you not learnt anything everyone is replacable and our scouting team can replace them with better cheaper versions 😀

    I would like to keep/improve our current team but it may not be possible.

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  55. your wrong, in.a 4 3 3 ba prefers to play on the left as he has done with senegal often with cisse in the middle

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  56. We now have an attacking forward line to be proud of ( and for matches with the SMB we have Shola the Mackem Slayer). Demba Ba will get 20 goals this season no worries 😛

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  57. sorry, but i think this is the biggest load of bollocks ive read on here.

    ba has not lost form. just because he hasnt scored in a FEW games doesnt mean he’s playing shit. im a striker my self and scoring is NOT your only job.

    im sick of hearing that hes lost form… please point out the evidence if im incorrect and i’ll confidently set you straight.

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