The Senegal striker's future is once again the subject of intense speculation with a series of clubs reportedly ready to activate the release clause in his contract when the transfer window opens next month.
Pardew is in the process of identifying potential targets of his own in several positions and has confirmed that Marseille frontman Loic Remy is among them.
Whether or not a striker will remain a priority should Ba stay, as his manager would dearly love him to do, remains to be seen, but in the circumstances, Ameobi's match-winning intervention against QPR on Saturday could hardly have come at a more opportune moment.
The 31-year-old said: "It's been frustrating, sitting on the bench every week and watching the lads out there doing their best to try to win.
"As a player, you want to be involved and help in any way you can. At the moment, that's me coming off the bench and I just have to do what I can.
"Hopefully I can make an impact like I did on Saturday. I'm just really delighted that we sent everyone home happy for Christmas."
- Sports & Recreation