Vurnon Anita

By Anthony Marshall - Newcastle United Managing Editor

 

Don't ever let it be said that footballers don't know what's at stake when they step on the pitch.

And if you want proof of that, look no further than Newcastle United midfielder Vurnon Anita.

This week, the Dutchman and his teammates had the Magpies' dreadful Old Trafford record drilled into them by manager Alan Pardew.

More than 41 years had passed since Newcastle last won away at Manchester United, but with that statistic firmly etched into their minds, they set about wiping the slate clean.

Yohan Cabaye's second-half strike proved enough to secure all three points, and Anita was delighted to be part of an "historical win".

"We knew that it had been 41 years since we last won here," he told nufc.co.uk after the final whistle.

"We were told it a few days ago by the manager. It's a historical win and we did it with good, beautiful football.

"We pressed the ball and kept it well when we won it back.

"We needed a win, of course. We lost on Wednesday (at Swansea) so felt we had something to straighten out, and we did it well."

At Old Trafford, Anita was recalled to the Newcastle line-up for his first start since the end of September

But there was no sign of rustiness from the former Ajax man, who was outstanding in the middle of the park alongside match-winner Cabaye and Cheick Tiote.

"It was great to be back in," he said.

"You always want to play, and if you aren't playing then you have to work hard in training so the manager knows you are ready.

"I was pleased to start, I enjoyed it, I think I did well and we won, so everything is good."

To buy a Newcastle United shirt with Vurnon Anita's name and number on the back, click here.