Karl Darlow has shrugged off the plaudits for his goalkeeping heroics – and insisted he’s only interested in points.
Darlow stopped a second-half penalty from Yohan Cabaye in Newcastle United’s 1-0 win over Crystal Palace on Saturday.
And the club’s third-choice goalkeeper also denied Cabaye and Yannick Bolasie before the break at St James’s Park, where a 58th-minute free-kick from Andros Townsend was the difference between the two sides.
The result lifted the club out of the Premier League’s relegation zone.
Darlow and Townsend were the talk of Tyneside after the game.
Asked if he felt like a hero, Darlow said: “No I don’t!
“Not at all. There’s a long way to go. Three points was the main objective, and Andros’s goal was unbelievable. That keeps us going for the rest of the season.
That is a big three points for us. It keeps our run going a bit longer.
“It was a good moment for me, and those three points could be massive come the end of the season.
“We need to take that into the last two games, and hopefully that will be enough for us to stay in the division.”
Referee Mike Dean penalised a handball from Moussa Sissoko for the 70th-minute penalty.
But Darlow said: “I don’t have a clue what went on with the penalty.
“I thought he had blown up for a foul on one of our defenders, so I was just getting ready to take a free kick and then he pointed at the spot. Thankfully. I guessed the right way.
“There wasn’t much going through my mind.
“It was one of those where I had just picked the way to go and then dived hard and then reacted to the ball. Hopefully, I went the right way, and then the ball was there and I made the save.”
Darlow was relieved he didn’t follow team-mate Cheick Tiote’s advice for Cabaye’s penalty.
Instead, the 25-year-old called on his pre-game research.
Darlow said: “All I saw was Cheicky pointing the wrong way!
“We look through everyone’s penalties before we play them. We do our research, and Cabaye had put his last four or five the other way.
“So it was one of them that was just instinct. I just had a funny feeling he might go that side. I just dived that way, and dived hard, and thankfully saved it.”
Asked it was the most important save he had made, he added: “Possibly.
“In football you have different moments in your career that you remember, and that will definitely be one of them – if it keeps us in the division.
“It feels good for now, but the only important thing is being there (out of bottom three) at the end of the season.
“That’s the end goal. We need to make sure this club stays in the division.
“We have put ourselves in with a great chance now, and we can salvage something and stay in this league.”
Newcastle, having taken eight points from their last four games, have a point more than Sunderland, though Sam Allardyce’s side have a game in hand.
On the new-found “belief” inside the dressing room, Darlow said: “The Man City game was huge for us.
“Coming against such a big team, it gave us a big boost.
“And then going away to Anfield and being 2-0 down, and given absolutely no chance of fighting back again, shows there is belief and a lot of characters in this team.
“We need to keep stepping out on to the pitch and keep doing that for the rest of the season.”