Gouffran: 'Superb Support Swung It'
Written by Newcastle Utd
Newcastle United FC
Yoan Gouffran believes the St. James' Park fans were "the most important factor" as Newcastle beat the European champions on his home debut
By Dan King - Newcastle United Club Reporter
It was his real first taste of the famous St. James' Park noise as Newcastle took on Chelsea - and Yoan Gouffran believes the Toon Army ultimately swung the game in United's favour on Saturday.
The new signing from Bordeaux - whose only previous appearance at the stadium came in the Europa League for his former club last October - was a perpetual motion against the European champions, helping to lead from the front as the Magpies took the game to the Blues in the first half and went in front through Jonas Gutierrez.
Rafael Benitez's turned the tables in the second half, with Frank Lampard and Juan Mata on target, but then the 12th man stood up to be counted. And, with the home crowd roaring them on, Gouffran latched onto Papiss Cisse's pass to force Petr Cech into a parry from which Moussa Sissoko turned home.
Then, rather than settle for a point, Newcastle continued to attack and won all three points in the final minute of normal time as Sissoko became an instant hero on Tyneside with his second of the afternoon to clinch a 3-2 victory.
That made it two wins out of two for Gouffran since his arrival at the end of January and he told nufc.co.uk: "It's a very good start.
"It was an incredible atmosphere and I think the most important factor was the fans. They kept behind us and when we went behind, we kept fighting and we had that belief that we could nick another goal - and that's what happened.
"That is important: the belief that you can achieve something bigger.
"When they scored the second goal, that came as a surprise to us but we kept fighting, we kept the spirit and then we scored the winning goal. That's why we're happy today and that's what we're here for - to work hard and to get wins."
Sissoko will rightly dominate the headlines but Gouffran was part of a strong supporting cast. His workrate was exceptional and he almost got his name on the scoresheet in the build-up to United's vital 68th minute equaliser.
That would have been a perfect way to announce himself to the Gallowgate faithful but he insisted that it doesn't matter who scores the goals.
"It's a team game," he smiled. "Most importantly, I count on my ability to run with the ball and maybe score a few goals along the way, but I'm happy with the performance.
"When I took up the Newcastle jersey, I said to the club 'I'm going to give 100 per cent' and that's what happened today. The most important thing for me is just to keep playing with my ability and make sure I play for the whole team.
"I'm happy with the three points. The lads pulled it off and the most important thing is to keep up that spirit. Overall it was a good performance - let's keep it up."
With the Magpies' French revolution off to a flyer, Gouffran now hopes to extend the winning run at Tottenham next weekend - and believes that anything is possible if the team can match Saturday's performance.
"When I first came, everybody wanted all the French players to do well for the team and I think again against Tottenham, it's going to be a similar game," he said.
"But we just have to believe as we did against Chelsea, and hopefully we can do something great there."
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