Demba Ba at odds with Newcastle boss Alan Pardew

Newcastle striker Demba Ba missed their Europa League clash with Maritimo yesterday, the day after his agent suggested he does not understand his current role at the club.

Manager Alan Pardew, whose team face Norwich City in the Premier League on Sunday, is understood to be determined to hold on to Ba – despite his agent's outburst against him.

Ba's representative, Alex Gontran, said the 27-year-old 'doesn't understand the management' at Newcastle United.

Gontran's provocative comments came in the wake of Pardew's decision to name Ba as a substitute on Monday night, when he came off the bench to score two goals in the 2-2 draw against Everton.

Pardew's team selection didn't sit well with Ba, who said after the match he hadn't been happy with one or two issues behind the scenes at St James' Park.

Gontran went further in an interview with the BBC, questioning Pardew's decision to field Ba on the left wing in the second half of last season.