Tim Krul believes Newcastle United are beginning to reap the rewards of the new philosophy brought in by Steve McClaren.
McClaren took over from John Carver in the summer and immediately set about stamping his mark on the club – changing the style of play and training regime.
I think the main thing for me is that he has come in and given the lads confidence.
Newcastle’s head coach is keen to see his players play from the back, breaking forward quickly and in numbers.
There were clear signs of that approach in the goalless draw at Manchester United, with plenty of committed defending too.
And Krul believes the signs are positive.
“We just have to keep working on it, it is a new philosophy,” said Krul.
“We have new players too and some of the boys have difficulty with their English.
“But it will come, we just have to keep working on it in games like this.
“We take a lot of confidence out of it because we showed some good signs. We just have to look at it week by week, every game, because you never know.
“You really have to focus and cannot look too far ahead as our fixtures are not the easiest, the first nine.
“We have some hard weeks coming up, but I am really positive after Saturday.”
Those thoughts are echoed by Krul’s teammate, Steven Taylor.
When asked what impact McClaren had made, Taylor added: “The style, the training regime - everything really.
“It’s a whole new look to Newcastle and it has been needing that - a bit of a fresh look to it.
“I think the main thing for me is that he has come in and given the lads confidence.
“Everyone has had a clean slate.”
The point against Louis van Gaal’s United was down to a much-improved display following the defeat at Swansea City.
And the draw also ended the club’s seven-game losing streak away from home in the Premier League.
Krul admits it was pleasing to be able to answer some of the critics.
“This result is a great boost for us all, it was a great team performance,” added Krul.
“Walking away from Old Trafford with a point is important, it would have been harsh on the effort we put in to walk away with nothing.
“You will always have your critics.
“Sometimes it is right, like last week [against Swansea] with the red card etc and we knew we had to bounce back from that.
“We did that.
“It wasn’t easy and we knew it was going to be a hard game.
“But I think our game plan worked and in the end we could have nicked the win.
“The effort the boys put in, even the wingers tracking back, Ayoze Perez and Gabriel Obertan, I am really pleased with the team.”
One player that stood out on his full debut was Serbian striker Aleksandar Mitrovic.
Leading the line in McClaren’s favoured 4-2-3-1 formation, Mitrovic showed greater discipline and worked hard, hitting the crossbar with a powerful header.
Krul added: “He is a top player and we have seen in training his quality.
“You need that spirit that Mitrovic shows, he just needs to understand when to do it and when not to.
“That will come with experience but I would rather have it than not.
“If you train with his enthusiasm, that will make everybody better.
“We have made some good signings.
“Florian Thauvin came on and showed some quality and while it takes time to gel, we are trying - you can see that.
“Sometimes it will go wrong but sometimes it will come off.”