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We deserved point at Palace, says Krafth

Written by Tom Easterby

Defender Emil Krafth felt that Saturday’s hard-earned point at Crystal Palace was a deserved one for Newcastle United – and is confident that a first win of the season wouldn’t be too far away.

Krafth started his first Premier League game since the opening day of the campaign at Selhurst Park, in what was Graeme Jones' first match in interim charge of the Magpies.

The Swedish international turned in a solid display as one of three centre halves deployed by Jones in a game which saw Callum Wilson's spectacular overhead kick rescue a point for United after Christian Benteke's opener.

And Krafth feels that his side's display warranted the point they will bring home from the capital and while that first three points of 2021/22 still eludes them, he believes the Magpies won't be waiting too much longer for it.

"It's been a long time since I've been playing. Personally, I feel good," Krafth told nufc.co.uk. "All the games now are really hard – there are no easy games.

"We know where we are and what we have to do. Every single point is very important and, at the moment, we need to show that we are here and fighting for the club.

"Always, we want to play good football, but first we have to make sure we do the work, and after the good play is going to come. But I thought we showed some good team spirit and some fighting spirit tonight, and it was a well-deserved point."

He added: "The win is going to come – it's just a matter of time, I think. But now, I think it's so vital to not lose the game – even though we didn't win, we still got a point, and I think that's going to be important at the end of the season.

"The win is going to come sooner or later – we know that. We just have to keep on fighting and show what we are."

Benteke saw what looked to be an 87th-minute winner ruled out by referee Darren England following a VAR check, which picked up Marc Guehi's foul just prior to the Belgian’s header.

And Krafth reckons the official made the correct call, insisting that it would have been harsh on Newcastle had that goal condemned them to defeat.

"For me it was clear – they were pulling the shirt of Ciaran (Clark), so if this wasn't a foul, nothing should be a foul!" he said.

"It was quite obvious for me when I saw the replay on the screen. They had a lot of chances, but we were happy that we could keep them out of the goal.

"We knew that if we didn’t concede, we would have a big chance to win the game. Now we conceded one today, but we knew as long as we could keep it tight we would have chances. We have top, top strikers up there – Callum, Allan (Saint-Maximin) and Joe (Joelinton) when he came on – so if we could just keep it tight we knew we would have chances to score. We will take one point and go home."

One his team’s defensive resilience, Krafth added: "As you saw, we went back to a back five, and it is making it nice and tight for an opponent to come through us. It's better that they play outside of us than inside.

"We spoke about it before the game, and said that we had to stay compact and don't let them have easy chances – and be there for each other, fight, and show the mentality that we know we have."

Krafth's first start for United since August comes just a few weeks on from his fine displays for his country, as he helped Sweden record convincing World Cup qualifying victories over Kosovo and Greece.

And now he hopes he will have done enough to keep his place in the Magpies' backline in the crucial coming weeks.

"I had two really good games with the national team – two 90 minutes, two wins," he said.

"It's always great to play for your country and then come back here and play. I hope I can carry this on."

"Always, we want to play good football, but first we have to make sure we do the work, and after the good play is going to come. But I thought we showed some good team spirit and some fighting spirit tonight, and it was a well-deserved point."

Emil Krafth

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