Krul has reasons to be cheerful

Saturday’s 0-0 draw with Fulham was less than that for which

manager Chris Hughton, his players and the club’s supporters had

hoped, but it was at least an improvement on their 2-1 midweek

defeat by Blackburn, their third in the Premier League at St James’

Park so far this season. It is a measure of the almost surreal

world in which Newcastle seem to operate that they will head for

Bolton, the division’s latest unlikely high-flyers, more confident

of returning with a result than they are at home. For the record,

only eight of the 18 points the Magpies have collected to date have

been won on Tyneside with victories at West Ham, Everton and

Arsenal and a draw at Wolves, accounting for the rest. In the

circumstances, the stalemate against a Fulham side which has not

won a league game on the road since the opening day of last season

may not be a big deal, although Krul was philosophical. He said:

“Chris said he wanted a reaction from us after Wednesday, and I

think we were better than Fulham, but sometimes you have to be

happy with a draw. “Fulham are a good side and they have some great

players and we must be happy. To be honest, we had our

opportunities and we worked our socks off. “We showed the passion

and we had our opportunities, but it wasn’t to be and I would

rather take a point than lose, as we did on Wednesday. “We have to

be happy with what we did. We have conceded some sloppy goals this

season, so to get the first clean sheet at home is always a good

thing. “The form we are in, we showed again on Saturday we are

capable of competing with any team, and I am looking forward to

going to Bolton.”