Ayoze Perez reveals why he has turned off his Twitter notifications
Ayoze Perez has opened up at the criticism he gets at Newcastle United – and his goal celebration.
Perez has celebrated his goals this season by sticking his fingers in his ears.
The forward first did it when he scored a winner against Watford in November – shortly after coming on to the pitch amid boos from some fans.
Perez, set to face Huddersfield Town at St James's Park this afternoon, has since scored against Wolverhampton Wanderers, Blackburn Rovers and Cardiff City.
"I found that I had to do it against Watford, and, since that moment, I've kept doing it," said the 25-year-old. “I will do it until the end of the season now. Hopefully, I can do it against Huddersfield.
“I scored the winner against them last season, so it would be great to do that again.”
Perez, in common with a number of his team-mates, had been struggling for form in the early part of the season, and the former Spain Under-21 international had to shut out the criticism – both on and offline – that was coming his way.
“Sometimes it’s good not to hear some things," Perez told The Sun. “The mentality is to avoid anything that can disturb you or make you think things you shouldn’t think.
“If you stay away from that, good days are going to come – and that’s what happened.”
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Perez – who has played 1,938 minutes in the Premier League so far this season – knows there are supporters who question his place in Rafa Benitez's side.
“Every person has their own opinion, and I respect that," said the Tenerife-born player. "Not everybody is going to like you, but you just have to focus on your thing and make sure you can perform on the pitch.
“At that time, I knew I wasn’t performing as well as I could. Nobody had to tell me. That’s why the gaffer put me on the bench.
“But in football you always get a chance to put things right – and I could do that with that goal.
“From that point, my confidence has grown, and I'm feeling good. I would like to have scored a couple more goals, but I'm doing my role as best I can.”
Perez – who has made 183 career appearances for the club, more than any other current player – has 135,000 followers on Twitter, but he has turned off the notifications.
“I have Twitter notifications off, so I try to be away from that," said Perez. “Even when things are going well, I try not to read it, because those things can make you think in a way you shouldn’t.
“I'm the first one that knows when I'm not doing well or I am doing well, and I have my family to discuss it with – I can speak to them about how I can improve.
“They're not going to tell me just what I want to hear. They give advice, and that helps me a lot.”