Sam Allardyce was a relived man last night after the game with Arsenal, and was clearly elated after his sideâ€™s magnificent performance against probably the best team in the land right now.
Sam Allardyce – his players were magnificent last night
Newcastle had Arsenal on the back foot for long periods of the game and while Sam thought Newcastle deserved to win, at the end of the day he was happy with the draw and delighted with the performance. This was one of the best performances we’ve seen from a Newcastle side for a long long time.
â€œItâ€™s actually a little hard to take, after pulling off a performance like that, not to have won the game. To be 1-0 down, to have enough opportunities and half-chances against a team like Arsenal, we feel disappointed that we havenâ€™t taken all three points. That is the feeling in the dressing room and Iâ€™m glad to say that.â€
â€œIf Iâ€™d been asked before the game, after the run we were coming out of, weâ€™d have taken a draw. It looked like it might be a difficult night for us, but it wasnâ€™t difficult for our own players. They played well at St Jamesâ€™s and the fans got behind them, pushing them on to get the victory.â€
â€œThe result is huge. I would have said at the start that a draw would feel like a win, but I donâ€™t think we got what we deserved.
â€œItâ€™s not often you can get Arsenal on the back foot for so long and I think the second-half performance meant it was Arsenal who were hanging on. I think that is really encouraging. The header we had at the far post (Steven Taylor) right at the death was as good a chance as you can have, but it didnâ€™t go in and we are relieved to get the point.â€
Newcastle certainly could have won the game, and yes, Taylor almost put the game away towards the end. But the big thing the supporters can take from this game is definite signs that Newcastle United can battle it out with the best of them. If the Liverpool and Portsmouth games are the worst we have played this season, then this is easily the best.
Let’s give credit where it’s due – the lads last night played with fire and brimstone, and not a little bit of skill. In short, they were absolutely magnificent. And the game was watched around the world on TV. No wonder Mike Ashley was rubbing his hands at the end of the game with some glee, and had a grin as wide as Tynemouth, on his face.