DANNY Simpson apologised to Newcastle United’s fans for the club’s 4-0 defeat at the DW Stadium – then insisted Alan Pardew’s side will right the wrongs of the loss at Stamford Bridge.
Pardew’s side will right the wrongs of the loss at Stamford Bridge.
United’s hopes of qualifying for Champions League football were dealt a blow by Wigan Athletic on Saturday.
Tottenham Hotspur yesterday climbed above Newcastle yesterday to move into fourth place in the Premier League with three games left to play.
United were backed by 4,500 fans at the DW Stadium, and Simpson and his team-mates were still applauded off the field, despite frustration at the result.
Newcastle, behind Spurs on goal difference, face sixth-placed Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday night needing at least a point to stay in the race for a Champions League place.
“We’ve got to apologise to the fans,” Simpson told the Gazette. “They were great,– even when we were down they were still cheering us on.
“We can’t get too down and negative, but we’re still in it. We’ve got our game in hand, and players, staff and fans have got to stick together.
“We’ve got to put in a performance, as we know we can, and get some points.
“They’ve been great. I think they realise we’ve come so far. They know it was an off-day, and we want to do better.
“We’ve got three games now. It’s a last push to finish as high as we can. We want to surprise a few more people.”
Victor Moses stunned United when he scored two goals in as many minutes, and the team’s first-half performance unravelled further later in the period, with Shaun Maloney and Franco Di Santo also netting before the break.
Newcastle improved after the interval, and Papiss Demba Cisse was denied a second-half hat-trick by a combination of goalkeeper Ali Al Habsi and the woodwork.
“It was an off-day for us, and a very good day for them,” said Simpson, who left the field with a slight knock.
“We started poorly, and we were 2-0 down with 20 minutes gone. It was tough from then on. They’re playing well at the minute, and you’ve got to give them credit. They’re fighting for their lives. We’re also fighting as well, but it wasn’t meant to be.
“Obviously, we’d been on a rollercoaster and won six games on the bounce, but it wasn’t meant to be.
“We’ve got to stick together and bounce back for Wednesday.”