DANNY Simpson has paid tribute to Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew for giving him the half-time team talk of his life.
But the defender doesn’t want to see Pardew blow his top like he did on Saturday again.
Simpson and his team-mates made Premier League history when they fought back from four goals down to draw 4-4 with Arsenal at St James’s Park.
While Cheik Tiote’s stunning late equaliser – and the incident involved Joey Barton and About Diaby, who was dismissed – dominated the headlines, the most significant few minutes of the afternoon were in the home dressing room at the break.
And Simpson admitted they deserved every word of their dressing down given their desperate first-half performance.
“We were a disgrace in the first half,” Simpson said. “The manager went mad at us – he shouted at a couple of us and went mad.
“We took it on board. That’s credit to the team, and you have to respect the manager for getting a reaction out of us. He said ‘forget the score, and go out and show some pride’
“We went out and showed some pride. To come back from four down against Arsenal is a credit to the lads.
“Thanks to the fans for sticking by us – they must have been calling us everything under the sun in the first half.
“That’s understandable. The fans who stayed – which was the majority – stuck by us and didn’t turn their back on us. They got us going, they made Arsenal nervous and kicked us on.”
Newcastle – who travel to Blackburn Rovers on Saturday – conceded four goals inside the first 26 minutes, which led supporters to fear for the second half.
However, Simpson insists the fightback underlined the character and spirit in Pardew’s dressing room.
“In the first half, when we were 4-0 down, we could hear the fans quite rightly going mad,” said the 24-year-old, who has never experienced an atmosphere like it at St James’s Park.
“Sometimes you want the ground to swallow you up, but we have characters in the dressing room and came back out. We nearly won it in the end.
“Even at 4-4, we nearly won it, but we still made sure we didn’t lose. The last couple of games we’ve conceded late goals, and we didn’t want to do it again.
“That was the loudest I’ve ever heard, even than against Sunderland, and I’ll never forget it.
“Once we got one goal, credit to the fans, they knew and we knew we had a chance.
“It made Arsenal nervous. Joey Barton stayed cool, Leon Best scored again, which is great, and then the last goal was a great strike from Cheik.”