'Controlled' performance pleases Ki
Written by Rory Mitchinson
Ki Sung-yueng felt that Newcastle United produced a controlled display to get the better of Burnley and record a third consecutive victory in the Premier League.
The Magpies raced into a two-goal lead at Turf Moor as Federico Fernández found the net with a deflected strike before stand-in skipper Ciaran Clark nodded Matt Ritchie’s cross beyond Joe Hart after the Scot had gathered the ball from Ki.
Burnley’s Sam Vokes halved the deficit with a looping header five minutes before the break, but it was United who looked the more likely to score again in the second half, with Ritchie slicing wide with the goal gaping and substitute Joselu striking the woodwork.
And, though the Clarets asked questions of United’s backline during a hefty chunk of stoppage time, Ki acknowledged that the Magpies could easily have been out of sight by that point.
“Yes, for sure. We had some definite chances in the second half,” he told nufc.co.uk. “In the first half, I think we were in control. They (Burnley) always (played) the long ball – how they scored, it was a cross and a header. But we did well to deal with that during the game, controlling the game. It was their home game, so there were a few moments where we were deep and had to defend, but overall I think we did very well.
“Especially in an away game, to score early gives the team more confidence and takes off a lot of pressure. Today, two goals was massive for us. It (allowed) us to control the game. I think we are becoming consistent. Three wins in a row is not easy to achieve, but I think we dealt with every moment we faced, and then, with the ball, I think we were much better and created a lot more chances.”
Rafa Benítez’s side leapfrogged Saturday’s visitors to St. James’ Park, West Ham United, with victory at Turf Moor.
And South Korean international Ki, who has figured in each of Newcastle’s wins of late, is keen for the Magpies to set their sights further up the table – rather than looking over their shoulders – after moving four points clear of the Premier League’s relegation zone.
“For sure. It is not impossible to win four in a row,” he said. “It’s massive for us to battle in this way, especially at St. James’ Park, in front of our fans. We want to make it four in a row. We know that it’s not easy, but I think we can do it if we perform like this and like we did in the last two games at home.”
"I think we dealt with every moment we faced, and then, with the ball, I think we were much better and created a lot more chances."