Newcastle goalkeeper Martin Dubravka reveals the key to his North East Player of the Year success

Martin Dubravka has heaped praise of his Newcastle United teammates after winning theNorth East Football Writers Association Player of the Year award
Martin Dubravka has heaped praise of his Newcastle United teammates after winning theNorth East Football Writers Association Player of the Year award
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Martin Dubravka has heaped praise of his Newcastle United teammates after winning the North East Football Writers Association Player of the Year award.

The 29-year-old, who signed from Sparta Prague in January last year, is the 39th winner of the NFWA and is the seventh keeper to be selected.

Dubravka's debut was a memorable one after a clean sheet in a 1-0 over Manchester United in February proved the catalyst in the Magpies' battle against relegation.

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The Slovakian played a massive part in helping Rafa Benitez's miraculously achieve a top 10 finish last season before he was snapped up for just £4.5million in the summer.

Putting aside Dubravka error against the Red Devils on Wednesday evening, Dubravka has maintained a high level of performances and has cemented himself as a fans' favourite on Tyneside.

And Dubravka, who joins ex-Magpie Shay Given among goalkeepers to have won the award, pinpointed his teammates as the reason to his success.

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"I'm really surprised and honoured to win the award," said Dubravka.

"It means a great deal to me but it would not be possible without my team-mates."

Dubravka attended the awards last year with Benitez and as a replacement for joint-winner Matt Ritchie, who unwell and unable to collect his award alongside Jamaal Lascelles.

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However, on this occasion, Dubravka will be the star of the show when he attends the event at Ramside Hall on Sunday, February 17.

He added: "I actually went to last year's award ceremony with some of the guys to congratulate Jamaal Lascelles and Matt Ritchie and it was a great night, so I will be very proud to receive the trophy myself.

"Thank you to all of the journalists and writers who voted for me. It was an excellent year and I hope 2019 will be even better for me and for my team."

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Meanwhile, Sunderland striker Josh Maja triumphed to the Young Player of the Year award and Durham Women midfielder Beth Hepple was voted Ladies Player of the Year.

Once again this year funds raised on the night will go to the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation.

The Sir Bobby Robson Foundation’s North East Personality of the Year will be also presented on the night along with a number of presentations to recognise the region’s football successes

Tickets are available from Claire Stephen at the Ramside 0191 375 3080. claire.stephen@ramsidehallhotel.co.uk