Newcastle stopper admits losing faith

Newcastle goalkeeper Steve HarperSteve Harper admits he feared his career at Newcastle United was over; such was the form of the younger Tim Krul last season.

The 37-year-old’s Premier League appearance in Newcastle’s 2-2 draw with Everton on Monday was his first in over a year. Harper conceded it had been tough and that his motivation was faltering.

Speaking ahead of the Toon Army’s Thursday night Europa League clash with Maritimo, Harper said: “I didn’t think a night like this would come again. It looked a long way away.

“It was probably a little bit my fault as well. When Tim started last season, I admit I got the hump and let standards slip. That’s probably the reason I wasn’t involved.

“But the first morning of pre-season the manager came to see me. He said, ‘have you still got it?’ I said, ‘yes’. He told me if I showed him I still wanted it, there would be an opportunity, so credit to him.”

Dutch international Krul, is currently missing with an elbow injury suffered playing for his country, giving Harper a chance to prove his worth to Alan Pardew.