Ayoze Perez explains the one reason why Newcastle United did not take advantage of rivals Brighton's slip up

Ayoze Perez.
Ayoze Perez.

John Ruddy was all that stood between Newcastle United and an extended lead at the top of the Championship, according to Ayoze Perez.

The Norwich City keeper was on top form to deny the Magpies last night, who managed to sneak a late draw thanks to a strike from skipper Jamaal Lascelles.

While it may look like Rafa Benitez's men got out of jail courtesy of their skipper, it was a game in which they dominated in terms of possession and chances created.

And as a result Spaniard Perez was left disappointed his side could only register just the one point at Carrow Road.

He was particularly frustrated with impressive ex-England international John Ruddy.

Perez told NUFC TV: "He made some saves for them. He made key saves in the game.

"He had a good game, but that is football.

"We deserved even more. We had a lot of chances.

"This happens sometimes."

One thing the manager picked out after the game was United's character.

Having taken an early lead, courtesy of Perez, after just 23 seconds Newcastle were quickly pegged back and then fell behind with less than 20 minutes on the clock.

It took the players until the closing stages to get back on terms, and they even could have won it late on had United not let a number of chances go begging.

Perez underlined Benitez's words.

"We fought until the end - that is important," he said.

"We had the chance to score first then we concede two goals to little mistakes but came back in the second half and could have won it.

"It is a good point after what happened.

"I think we deserved the points, we had clear chances to win it but we couldn't take them. The point was not enough for us.

"We now need to focus on the next one."