By Dan King - Newcastle United Club Reporter
Tim Krul made a handful of vital saves to keep Newcastle in the game at Fulham on Monday night, but was left to rue missed chances at the other end as United's wait for an away win continued at Craven Cottage.
The Dutch international keeper was at his best to make two big stops from Dimitar Berbatov and one from Steve Sidwell but could do nothing to keep out Sidwell's deflected shot and a powerful header from Hugo Rodallega.
And so despite creating a host of opportunities, including Hatem Ben Arfa's goal eight minutes into the second half, United were unable to build on their win against Wigan seven days earlier, which meant Krul was in no mood to accept personal plaudits.
"It doesn't mean anything when you lose, especially after the way we played," he told nufc.co.uk.
"We've had eight or nine shots on target, others that have hit the post, been kicked off the line... but just no luck.
"I don't know what it is; we're playing well, working hard - we just gave two stupid, silly, unlucky goals away.
"When it was 1-1, the momentum was on our side. We put the pressure on them - and then we conceded a silly goal and we're on the back foot again.
"We're doing it over and over again. We just keep giving silly goals away and we have to have a good look at what we've done wrong, again.
"We're playing well now, though. Before, we weren't playing well but we are now. If we just keep playing like this, the luck will come through hard graft - that's football."
Newcastle now go into a run of fixtures which kicks off with the visit of Manchester City before another home games against a revitalised Queens Park Rangers and trips to Manchester United and Arsenal.
"It's going to be a massive on Saturday for us," Krul said. "We know everybody has to be on it.
"We can't do with two or three players playing at their best. On Saturday we need eleven players on top form. That's what we did last year and hopefully we can make a good statement on Saturday and beat the champions."
United were at least boosted by the return of Ben Arfa after four games out, and the Frenchman showed what his side had been missing in recent weeks with his stunning goal.
And Krul admitted: "He's important for us - massive.
"He gives us an extra sparkle and he's back so hopefully on Saturday he'll be back firing again."
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