Fergie hails battling troops

04 March 2009 10:29
Sir Alex Ferguson was pleased with the effort on display from his Manchester United side on Wednesday. The Red Devils extended their lead at the top of the Premier League to seven points with a hard-fought 2-1 win at Newcastle. United were forced to recover from going a goal down at St James' Park, with Peter Lovenkrands breaking the deadlock inside the opening 10 minutes. However, goals from Wayne Rooney and Dimitar Berbatov either side of half-time saw Ferguson's men prevail on Tyneside, stretching their run of consecutive victories in the league to 11. "It wasn't a great performance," Ferguson told Sky Sports. "We got off to a terrible start and Newcastle were pumped up for it. But we expected that and we should have dealt with them better. "But coming back from 1-0 down to win a game is a good result for us. It required a lot of grit at times. Our football has been better, we were a bit careless with the ball, but to come back from 1-0 behind is pleasing. The Scot added: "Newcastle know this is a massive game for them, they're a big football club, and they went about their job in the right way. They put in good crosses from both sides of the pitch. "They got a bit of fortune with the goal, Edwin van der Sar makes a mess of it, and they had a couple of chance after that. (Obafemi) Martins hit one by the post and they had one cross deflected just wide. It was a hairy spell for us." Ferguson is confident United can handle the pressure heading into the business end of the season, believing his players have been in this situation enough times to know what to expect. "We have had this for years. It makes no difference to us whether we play first or second, we rely on and trust the players to show their patience and experience," he said. "We've been through this time and time again and it's not new. Coming to Newcastle is not an easy place and we have got a good victory. "I think tonight we faced a different type of challenge. Newcastle were aggressive and putting in tackles everywhere. You have to give them credit, but we have withstood it and managed to get a result."

Source: SKY_Sports