Martin Dubravka reveals what Newcastle must do if they are to climb Premier League table

Martin Dubravka
Martin Dubravka

Newcastle United goalkeeper Martin Dubravka believes his side needed to be ‘cleverer’ after they were failed to see out their game against Wolves on Sunday.

The Magpies lost 2-1 to Nuno Espirito Santo’s side at St James’s Park, following DeAndre Yedlin’s red card in the 57th minute.

Matt Doherty scored a stoppage-time winner for the visitors when the Magpies were left exposed at the back in the final few minutes.

And Dubravka, who kept out Diogo Jota’s original effort before Doherty headed home, thought his side could have managed the game better.

“We expected it was going to be a tough game and after DeAndre’s red card it was even harder for us,” said Dubravka.

“I think even after that we played well, we created a few chances to score the goal and I don’t think we gave them so much space.

“They created two good chances (at the end) and they scored one goal, so I think we probably need to play a little bit more clever in the last five minutes because it was hard to play only 30 minutes with just 10 players.”

Newcastle looked more balanced in a 3-4-3 formation but missed the chance to move six points clear of the relegation zone ahead of back-to-back games against sides in the bottom three.

Newcastle face a trip to Huddersfield this weekend before a fixture with Fulham at St James’s Park.

Dubravka knows the importance of both fixtures ahead of a Boxing Day clash with Liverpool at Anfield, and insists his side’s approach won’t change despite the late sucker punch on Sunday.

“Every game is different, especially away games, but as I say we will play the same style,” added Dubravka.

“I think we were the better team and if we play the same way we will take some points,”

After going 10 games without a win at the start of the season, Newcastle have at least put some distance between themselves and the perilous drop zone.

The Magpies won three games in a row in October with victories over Watford, Bournemouth and Burnley, following a difficult run of fixtures at the start of the campaign.

And while Dubravka knows games against the top sides shouldn’t be dismissed, the Slovakian realises the extra importance when facing sides in and around them.

“We were working really hard and we were already prepared for these kinds of games especially at home,” added Dubravka.

“We knew the fixtures were pretty tough in the beginning and we knew we could probably take some points against these kinds of teams, we wanted to take these points (against Wolves) but unfortunately we didn’t.”

While many argued Yedlin’s sending off was the correct decision, there’s no question it caused Newcastle to lose momentum.

Dubravka is hoping his side recieve a bit more luck in their upcoming fixtures and are rewarded for their hard work on the training pitch.

“That’s football sometimes you need a little bit of luck and I don’t think we had that luck,” he added.

“I think if we had played with 11 players it would have been a different game but it’s hard to complain about DeAndre because he tried to play as best as possible so it’s really hard to complain.”