Tim Krul Pushing Steve Harper To His Best-Ever Form

Steve Harper’s first-half heroics during last night’s 1-0 victory over Leicester City, showed just exactly why he’s Newcastle United’s No.1 goalkeeper this season.


Steve Harper – fantastic save from header after 21 minutes

Harper twice stopped The Foxes last night with great saves – as they looked to be getting on top of Newcastle, and at half time there were a lot of worried Geordie fans for sure – us included.

Harper brilliantly saved Steve Howard’s  header, as the Durham-born striker hit home a corner, but somehow Steve kept it out.

One of our problems in the first half was that Howard was winning every ball in the air, and Danny Simpson is too short and not dominant enough in the air to play center back, although he was good with the ball on the floor.

Then on 37 minutes,  the Easington-born keeper flung himself down low to his left, in the driving rain, to get both hands to Paul Gallagher’s goal-bound free-kick and divert it for a corner.

Chris told Newcastle United TV after the match last night:

“Steve Harper has been a big reason why we’ve kept four clean sheets in a row and was a big reason why we won tonight,”

“He made two great saves again and that allowed us to get the winner at the other end.”

“But that’s why he’s in the position he is and that’s why he’s our number one.”

And there’s one big reason Steve has been outstanding in the last several games – Tim Krul.

This is what competition for places in a squad will do – and Steve is only too well aware there’s a top notch 20 year old just ready to take his place as Newcastle’s number one. And that’s not even to mention Fraser Forster, currently on loan to Norwich City.

But Harper was great last night, and he saved the game for us in the first half, when Leicester had several good chances to score, but either didn’t take them or Steve was there to save.

After 21 minutes he produced that save to remember.

Leicester City fans can argue this morning, with some justification, that they missed a great chance of a memorable victory last night – but it was the fighting never-say-die attitude of the Newcastle players after half time, that won the points for the Magpies.

And we always love to see a fighting,spirited and passionate display from the lads, and we got that in spades last night.

By the way this was Leicester’s first league defeat in 6 months.
Comments welcome.

11 comments so far

  • Macas35

    Sep 1, 2009 at 11:30 AM

    Comment #1

    Just can’t believe so many fans on here were slagging him off a weeks back after the West Brom game when Krul came on. Krul may well become a good keeper in the future but doesn’t look ready yet to step into the job full time.

  • Jan Stavik

    Sep 1, 2009 at 11:36 AM

    Comment #2

    Krul would have made those two saves comforably.

    Let Harper get some games now, it’s just a matter of time before Krul pushes him out of the side.

  • simon376@work

    Sep 1, 2009 at 11:50 AM

    Comment #3

    Don’t know about Krul making those saves easy. I’ve got faith in him and think he will be great in the future, but he wasn’t that great against huddesfield

  • G

    Sep 1, 2009 at 11:54 AM

    Comment #4

    I agree that Krul looks like a great prospect, but seriously, it is to easy to say that he is threatening Harpers place. Stevie is deffo number 1 on our books, for shot stopping there was very little between him and Given, so I am quite happy to see Harper getting a regular game. I would say Krul is still a couple of years from being the finished article.

  • Jeff D

    Sep 1, 2009 at 11:54 AM

    Comment #5

    Harper is a good keeper and would probably be capped if it wasn’t for blind loyalty. He still my be if we get promoted back to the prem.

  • BT9MAG

    Sep 1, 2009 at 12:00 PM

    Comment #6

    Macas35 – Couldn’t agree more! Harper has been class in the championship so far and few if any keepers could have done anything to prevent our fall from the Premiership, so why oust him?

  • simon376@work

    Sep 1, 2009 at 12:06 PM

    Comment #7

    At the risk of giving it the kiss of death (don’t blame me) we have only let one in in the league this season, and Harper took a kick in the face as that happened and had to be subbed. Just hope people get off his back and think how lucky we are.

  • Whumpie

    Sep 1, 2009 at 12:11 PM

    Comment #8

    I think Krul has fantastic reactions, but he showed against Udders that he’s a long, long way off being the complete product.

    I’m more than happy with our GK setup; don’t want any changes there.

    By the way – was it just me, or was Barton one of the worst players last night? Ran a lot, but just failed to do anything useful with 90% of his posession.

    Also – boy do we need some wingers.

  • Macas35

    Sep 1, 2009 at 12:19 PM

    Comment #9

    Whunpie – I’m amazed that Hugton hasn’t mentioned the need for a winger or two as a priority. We had 5 central midfielders playing last night and although we came through with the win it would be a lot easier with some natural width.

  • Whumpie

    Sep 1, 2009 at 12:19 PM

    Comment #10

    Didn’t a championship ‘keeper get capped last season?

  • cupiddstunt

    Sep 1, 2009 at 3:54 PM

    Comment #11

    Agree with Jeff D I think Harper would have been capped long long ago had he not stayed with us as second man, a quality quality keeper.


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