Tottenham Hotspur vs. Newcastle United: 6 Things We Learned
Loic Remy’s first-half strike was enough to earn Alan Pardew’s side all three points at White Hart Lane, where the Frenchman notched his seventh goal of the campaign.
But it was Toon goalkeeper Tim Krul who stole the headlines in North London, with the Dutch international making a string of stunning saves to keep Spurs at bay.
So as the Geordies head back to Tyneside following their third away win of the season, we look at six things we learned from Sunday’s clash.
Tim Krul Is One of the Best Keepers in the Premier League
In a week that saw Tottenham Hotspur’s goalkeeper all over the national news, Tim Krul wrote some headlines of his own in the capital with an outstanding display.
His agility and composure between the posts kept Newcastle United’s lead intact on numerous occasions, and his man of the match award at the end was fully justified.
The Dutchman made an incredible 14 saves—more than any top-flight stopper this season—and the 25-year-old also kept his second clean sheet in a row.
The pick of Krul’s saves came after the break as the home side searched for an equalizer, but he frustrated Spurs from beginning to end and enhanced his reputation as one of the best keepers around.
Yoan Gouffran Is Becoming One of Alan Pardew's Key Players
Deployed ahead of Davide Santon down Newcastle United’s left-hand side, Yoan Gouffran worked tirelessly against Tottenham Hotspur and was an influential figure.
He displayed his attacking instincts with an immaculate through-ball that Loic Remy buried for the only goal of the game.
But he also proved his worth in a defensive capacity, continually tracking back in support of his full-back and nullifying the threat from Andros Townsend and Kyle Walker.
Having scored the opener in the win over Chelsea last weekend, the former Bordeaux man followed up with an energetic performance full of guile and tenacity.
Loic Remy Must Be Signed on a Permanent Basis
With his seventh strike of the 2013-14 campaign at Spurs on Sunday, Newcastle United striker Loic Remy proved once more how vital he is to the Black and White cause.
The French international has scored almost half of the Magpies’ league goals this season, and his contribution to the side as an attacking force has been inspirational.
His instincts in and around the 18-yard box make him the Toon’s standout player so far this term, but it’s easy to forget that the 26-year-old is only on loan from Queens Park Rangers.
It’s unclear whether a fee has been agreed upon between the two clubs, but surely turning the deal into a permanent one must be at the top of the Toon’s to-do list in January.
Mike Williamson Was Right to Wait for His 1st-Team Chance
It was during the summer that the future of Mike Williamson was called into question, with Cardiff City just one of the clubs credited with an interest in the defender.
After a difficult 2012-13 campaign, the former Watford man found himself out of the first-team picture and began the current season as Newcastle United’s fourth-choice centre-back.
However, since his introduction against Everton at the end of September, the 30-year-old has looked solid at the back for Alan Pardew’s men and fully justified his run in the side.
His aerial ability was vital in the win at Tottenham Hotspur—especially late on as Spurs poured forward—and on this form, even though Fabricio Coloccini has returned from injury, he’ll be difficult to drop.
Newcastle United Have a Real Team Ethic
In the early part of this season, it was the occasional brilliance of Hatem Ben Arfa that grabbed the headlines, as Newcastle United worked hard to gather some momentum.
Some 11 games into the campaign, however, the Magpies are winning matches thanks to teamwork—an ethic that was clearly evident in their victory at Tottenham Hotpsur.
Thanks to wide midfielders Yoan Gouffran and Moussa Sissoko, the Toon’s full-backs were given generous support, as was the back four, who were ably assisted by Yohan Cabaye and Cheick Tiote.
The Magpies pressed their opponents to perfection in the buildup to the game’s only goal, and that determination throughout the side has seen them take points off Liverpool, Chelsea and Spurs in recent weeks.
Mathieu Debuchy Is Finding His Feet in the Premier League
After much criticism during the early part of his Newcastle United career, following his January switch from Lille, it was unclear whether Mathieu Debuchy would ever get to grips with English football.
In the last few games, however, the French right-back has begun to look the part in the Toon’s back four, both in a defensive sense as well as an attacking threat.
With Moussa Sissoko preferred to the often idle Hatem Ben Arfa in front of him, Debuchy’s tasks have been aided in recent weeks, and the 28-year-old has flourished.
His confidence has received a much-needed boost, and if his impressive form continues, it will benefit his country in their upcoming World Cup play-offs as well as his club.