Tim Krul eyes Newcastle United end of season flourish
Newcastle United goalkeeper Tim Krul has urged his team-mates to end the season with a flourish after Tuesday's goalless draw with Manchester United.
The Magpies are seven points clear of the relegation zone, and could extend that gap with a result against struggling Blackpool on Saturday.
"We need to finish the season with a bang," Krul told BBC Newcastle.
"It's important to follow up to next season, I'm sure the manager will make sure we're sharp for Saturday."
Krul began the season as number two goalkeeper at St James but was handed a chance to impress when regular custodian Steve Harper sustained a shoulder injury against Everton in September.
But the Dutchman has not figured for the Tynesiders since Harper's return to the side in January and is determined to stake his claim for the position between now and the end of the season.
"It is what I hoped for before this game, when you get an opportunity you have to take it," Krul added.
"Hopefully I've done enough, I've always said I need to show the manager I am ready, and I am."
Tuesday's match also brought Krul up against his childhood hero Edwin van der Sar, who in his final season at 40-years-old remains Manchester United's first-choice goalkeeper.
"He is my hero, I first saw him when I was five years old when he was at Ajax, and ever since I've been following him," Krul added.
"Even to have half the career it would be amazing, what he has done during his career is out of this world.
"He played 130 times for his country, he captained everything, won everything, he is my idol and to play against him and to keep a clean sheet against Manchester United I can't describe."
Netherlands under-21 international Krul joined Newcastle from Den Haag in 2005, and has since made 29 appearances, 20 of which have come this season.