Rondón praises 'important' team attitude in comeback win
Written by Luke Vinton
Salomon Rondón played a vital role in Newcastle United's comeback victory over Everton, with the Magpies sealing their fifth consecutive win at St. James' Park.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Richarlison gave Everton a two-goal lead at half-time, with the Brazilian forward scoring a minute after Matt Ritchie's penalty was saved by Jordan Pickford after the goalkeeper brought down Rondón.
Despite their earlier misfortunes, the Magpies cut the deficit through Rondón's volley before Ayoze Pérez netted a late brace in front of the Gallowgate End to complete a terrific turnaround.
With Southampton, Cardiff City and Brighton all gaining valuable wins of their own, the Venezuelan striker stated the importance of Newcastle's victory in their bid for Premier League status next term.
"When we were losing in the first half, we showed great attitude and focus in trying to get back into the game," Rondón told nufc.co.uk. "The team spirit, performance and the comeback was so important for us, especially when other teams around us in the table managed to win. It is a massive three points for the team.
"When you are losing 1-0 and you have the chance to score from the penalty spot, we were left feeling psychologically down after missing and then conceding straight after. Everton scored with the first main chance and their second goal was from our mistakes.
"However, I think the group all have a strong mindset and we analysed the first half and made sure we were ready for the second. The result is important for the team and means a lot for everyone associated with Newcastle United so we now have to carry on positively."
After combining excellently with Pérez, Rondón produced a superb finish to grab United's first goal, taking his Premier League tally to eight goals this term.
Although the forward was fully focused on securing a strong result, he expressed his delight in netting a first-time strike in front of the Gallowgate End in a fixture known for Alan Shearer's outstanding volley against the Toffees in 2002 - when United also came from behind to win with two goals in the final ten minutes.
Róndon added: "The team and our supporters really needed that goal and you could see the atmosphere that was created from when we scored. I've watched the video of Alan Shearer's goal against Everton and it was great to finish off a good team move with a volley, although my strike was nowhere near Alan's!
"The most important thing was the attitude from the players, which we had shown brilliantly in the second half, and the substitutes coming off the bench also made a strong impact. Even though we were losing, we knew we were capable of changing the result and it's a huge victory for the squad.
"If we are going to stay up, one of our main targets is to achieve wins at home. We know how difficult the Premier League is, with so many good teams and players. To come back in the manner we did was magnificent for the club."
"I've watched the video of Alan Shearer's goal against Everton and it was great to finish off a good team move with a volley, although my strike was nowhere near Alan's!"