Football

Hughton praises Magpies' spirit

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Newcastle boss Chris Hughton praised the spirit of his team as they fought back from 2-0 down to snatch a point against Wigan.

The Magpies looked to be heading for their third successive Barclays Premier League defeat after old boy Charles N'Zogbia returned to haunt them with a quick-fire first-half double. But Hughton's men snatched a point at the death when skipper for the day Fabricio Coloccini headed home an equaliser in the fourth minute of added time after Shola Ameobi had pulled a goal back.

Hughton said: "What we have got in this side is great character, that I am aware of. What we are now doing is we are now playing our football in a tougher division, and Wigan have become very much an established Premier League side and they showed very much in patches the quality they have got."

He added: "We knew we were on the back of two home defeats and that's not something we wanted to continue.

"We know we are in a tougher division, but this is somewhere that became very much a fortress for us last season.

"The only way to get back to anywhere near that, which we know is impossible in this division, is to draw out results in whichever way we have to, and we showed great character and quality towards the end to get back into the game."

For Wigan boss Roberto Martinez, it was a case of what might have been as his side only just failed to hold out.

He said: "The game can be very cruel and that was a clear example.

"I felt we were well in control for the whole game, we scored two very good goals from open play, which is the hardest thing in football, and then we let ourselves down by just not being able to defend a set-play at the end.

"That's a little bit where we are. I feel we are very talented young group of players and we showed that. But then we are lacking that little bit of know-how, that little bit of experience that you need to show at critical moments of the game to see it through."

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Topics:
Football
Premier League
Fabricio Coloccini
Newcastle United
Wigan Athletic
Shola Ameobi
Charles N'Zogbia

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