Siem de Jong felt that his glass was half full rather than half empty after Sunday’s draw with Sunderland.
Despite thinking the visitors were hanging on in injury time and time wasting to desperately hang onto a point, the fact that Newcastle equalised so late means that the Dutch international thinks it was a better result for Newcastle than Sunderland after trailing for half the match.
Though he didn’t mention it himself, it was the introduction of Siem de Jong with half an hour to go and the tactical switch around by Rafa Benitez, which saw Newcastle really spark into life.
United are unbeaten this season when de Jong has started a Premier League game (wins against Liverpool & Spurs, plus the draw with Villa) and despite still lacking a yard of pace (not alone in that respect in the United team…), the former Ajax Captain brought composure to the Newcastle team.
Siem de Jong playing clever little balls which got Newcastle’s attacks flowing, rather than just booting it long or trying to force the ball forward.
As the midfielder points out though, the point is only one small step in the right direction and against Norwich a week on Saturday, Newcastle need to take the form of the last half hour against Sunderland into that vital game.
Siem de Jong:
“Of course they were delaying play because they were feeling that we would score.
“In the end we had a few opportunities to get a chance (to score the winner), either a block or not enough power, or whatever.
“With a bit of luck we could have got the 2-1 and we need to continue this next game.
“It’s different if you end the game with a goal – rather than conceding.
“Maybe we have a better feeling that Sunderland have after the game…
“We still need to focus on the next one now, they are all important games and unfortunately we could only manage one point.
“It was a good day in the end for us, with the crowd really behind us and we tried to get the 2-1 –unfortunately we only got the 1-1.”