Newcastle came away with a 1-0 victory in the derby against Sunderland on Sunday. Did the game live up to the image of a local derby?
Yes, like every local derby game it was a very physical confrontation. We didn't get a chance to play nice flowing football because Sunderland were really pressing us back. Happily, during the second half, the game went in our favour and we took three points.
That now keeps us in touch of the teams at the top, which will put us in a better frame of mind going into the Arsenal game.
And did Sunderland pose a physical challenge?
Yes they did, but we were well prepared and replied them well. A lot of the game was played in midfield, and when the defence was called upon they also did their job. But we weren't too spoilt for choice in front of goal. As for me, I didn't really see too much of the ball.
It was your free kick that met the head of Dabizas to score the winning goal, you must be happy about that.
Of course. I don't take all the free kicks, but that one was mine. I kicked it well, and Dabizas was there to meet it perfectly at the back post to finish it off.
The supporters were surely happy at the final whistle.
It was the game of the season and we had to win it. And we did just that.
The coming week is going to be vitally important for the preparation of the Arsenal game on Saturday.
This morning is going to be an easy day, and we get down to training tomorrow. We'll have a rest on Wednesday.
Your brother played for Montpellier against Lens on Saturday. He came on after 71 minutes. Did you give him any advice for the game?
He actually called me before the game, and I gave him some tips. He should have started the game, but found himself on the bench, but when he came on he did very well and one day he will get his chance at being a regular first team footballer. Talk again soon.
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